Ahead of the May long weekend, BC Ferries is reminding travellers to plan accordingly.
With peak demand expected between May 18 and 23, BC Ferries is adding 95 extra sailings to accommodate the more than 430,000 passengers and 170,000 vehicles expected to travel over the May long weekend.
Additional sailings between Metro Vancouver, Vancouver Island and the Sunshine Coast include 66 between Tsawwassen and Swartz Bay (including 6 a.m. sailings on May 20 and 23), 18 between Horseshoe Bay and Departure Bay, and 11 extra sailings between Horseshoe Bay and Langdale.
“Like the Easter long weekend, we continue to face staffing challenges and the potential for cancellations,” said Dean Dobrinsky, interim vice president, in a statement. “I want to thank all our employees who are accepting overtime to help us deliver extra sailings to support customers through this busy weekend.”
As of Thursday (May 11), limited reservations were available throughout the weekend departing from Horseshoe Bay and BC Ferries warned travellers to expect waits.
“Customers without bookings should consider alternate plans, including using public transit or travelling with their vehicle through the Tsawwassen terminal to access Vancouver Island. There will be longer than usual line-ups in the pre-ticketing zone in front of the vehicle tollbooths. If traffic exceeds the capacity of the pre-ticketing area, stand-by traffic may be turned away and asked to return at a later time for safety reasons,” BC Ferries wrote.
The most popular times on many routes during long weekends are usually Thursday and Friday afternoon and Saturday morning. Monday is historically the most desired time for travellers returning from Vancouver Island and the Sunshine Coast.
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