It’s early days yet and the new ferry schedule appears to be settling down, but we’d like to hear your views on how it’s working for you. The FAC will be meeting with BC Ferries in early May and it’s important that we have as much feedback as possible. How does the new schedule work for you? Is it better, or worse? If you’d like to share your views, head over to the have your say page and tell us about your experience. Alternatively, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and, with your agreement, we’ll add your comments anonymously to the website.
From time to time, the FAC independently monitors the punctuality of the ferry service, using satellite positioning data available on-line from MarineTraffic.com. The results of recent monitoring can be found on our Route 19 performance page. Over the first four days of operation, the vast majority of services have departed on time (up to a maximum 3 minutes late). As traffic conditions have varied, so have crossing times, so when it’s less busy, crossing times of 24 or 25 minutes are more typical, compared to 20-22 minutes when more time is needed for loading and unloading. This allows the ferry to reduce speed to 7-9 knots, which provides a considerable fuel saving compared to the normal sailing speed of 10-12 knots and also reduces greenhouse gas emissions.
One point to remember is that BC Ferries requires all vehicles to be ticketed and ready to board 5 minutes before departure. Although tickets are not issued on the Gabriola side, ferries will sometimes depart 1 or 2 minutes early if everyone is on board.