Carpools and vanpools

If you are an existing carpool or vanpool permit holder, sign in to renew your permit or update your account information.

If you are interested in signing up for a new carpool or vanpool permit please read the information below.

Perks for carpools and vanpools

Sharing the ride during your commute benefits you in two ways: money saved in gas and time saved in ferry lines. WSF gives preferential loading on specified sailings for registered vanpools and carpools. In addition preferential loading, Vanpools are not required to pay the vehicle fare.

Carpool program requirements

  1. Commute with at least two other people (3 riders total)
  2. You can form your own carpool, or visit Rideshare Online to find potential partners.
  3. Register as a Carpool with WSF
  4. Use your Carpool at least three days a week for a minimum of 9 months
  5. Carpool participants may only be registered in one carpool group with WSF. If the group travels in different vehicles, the permit may be transferred to another vehicle listed on your permit registration as long as the Carpool placard is displayed in the front left windshield and the vehicle carries the appropriate number of riders.
  6. Pay $20 annually for the permit

Vanpool program requirements

  1. Commute with at least four other people (5 riders total)
  2. You can form your own, or visit Rideshare Online to find potential partners.
  3. You may use a private vehicle or public transit van. If using a private vehicle, get a Rideshare license plate from the Washington State Department of Licensing. All Vanpools must have Rideshare plates. Private Vanpools cannot use another non-rideshare vehicle.
  4. Use your Vanpool at least three days a week for a minimum of 9 months.
  5. Register your Vanpool with WSF.
  6. Vanpool permits are non-transferable and may only be used for the registered vanpool vehicle.
  7. Pay $20 annually for the permit

How the program works

  • Participants sign up for their preferred route, round-trip sailing times, and days of the week they will be commuting and will receive a permit by mail. The permit allows travel on the printed sailing times, or the subsequent departure.
  • Participants are only guaranteed passage with this permit. There is no guaranteed first on/off privileges, and no guaranteed placement or location on the vessel’s car deck.  
  • This program operates 24/7 except holidays due to holiday sailing schedules.
  • Registered Vanpools do not pay a vehicle fare. All passengers, including the driver pay the applicable passenger fare. A minimum of five passenger tickets must be submitted at the tollbooth to receive preferential loading and waiver of the vehicle/driver fare.
  • Carpools are required to pay the vehicle/driver and passenger fares.


  • Register with WSF online. Your WSF Rideshare registration/permit needs to be renewed each year.
  • Participants may only be registered in one vanpool or carpool vehicle with WSF unless otherwise authorized.
  • Please allow 5 business days for permits application to be processed and mailed out.

Additional carpool/vanpool information

  • Safe driving and courteous interaction with the terminal staff is required of all participants.
  • Your WSF Rideshare permit may not be transferred or lent to another Rideshare group.
  • Misuse of Vanpool permits may result in revocation of your permit.
  • When a permit is revoked, each Vanpool member becomes ineligible for a six-month period.
  • Repeat offenders may be denied the privilege of preferential loading on Washington State Ferries. 

If you are unsure about queuing or loading at a particular terminal, or have any other questions please call 206-464-6400, or contact us online.