Local Information

Check ferry schedules, plan for long waits for Memorial Day weekend travel

Wednesday, May 26, 2021 - 10:00

Ian Sterling, communications, 206-714-1556
WSF media hotline, 206-402-8070

Several routes operating with modified service different from years past

SEATTLE – If a Washington State Ferries ride is part of your holiday weekend travel plans, double check sailing schedules and prepare for the possibility of long waits if driving a vehicle on board.

Most routes will operate on timetables different from Memorial Day weekends prior to COVID-19 for multiple reasons: One of WSF’s largest ferries, Wenatchee, is unavailable due to a fire and subsequent investigation and repair, continued coronavirus-related crewing challenges for quarantines and vaccinations, as well as a few ongoing service reductions in place since the start of the pandemic.

Route information

  • Seattle/Bainbridge Island: One smaller vessel.
  • Seattle/Bremerton: One smaller and slower vessel requiring cancellation of a midday roundtrip and some adjusted departure times.
  • Mukilteo/Clinton: One smaller vessel.
  • Fauntleroy/Vashon/Southworth: Two-boat schedule instead of three using one smaller vessel.
  • Anacortes/San Juan Islands: Schedule like previous late June through late September timetables, without a fifth vessel for international service to Canada.
  • Port Townsend/Coupeville: One-boat service instead of two.

Changes at Seattle’s Colman Dock
For people boarding a ferry in Seattle, the vehicle holding lanes and turnstiles for Bainbridge Island and Bremerton departures swapped places recently to accommodate the smaller vessel on the Seattle/Bremerton route. The Seattle/Bainbridge Island run is temporarily operating out of slip 3 at Colman Dock with Bremerton out of slip 1.

Transportation Security Administration face mask requirement
A face covering is required on all vessels and in terminals in compliance with the TSA’s face mask requirement. People in a vehicle are strongly encouraged to remain in their vehicle. If they must exit, they are required to put on a face covering. To maintain physical distance standards, WSF will enforce reduced occupancy in terminals and on sailings for walk-on passengers.

Holiday schedules
On Memorial Day, May 31, there will be a few schedule adjustments on most routes. Holiday sailings are marked on the timetables for each route.

Busy travel times
Lengthy wait times are possible for people who must drive a vehicle onto a vessel over the long holiday weekend. The busiest sailings will likely be in the westbound direction Thursday and May 27-28, then eastbound Sunday and Monday, May 30-31. To reduce or eliminate waiting, riders may consider taking an early morning or late evening sailing.

Before boarding, customers are encouraged to sign up for ferry email alerts, check terminal conditions and review WSF’s COVID-19 travel updates. The Anacortes/San Juan Islands and Port Townsend/Coupeville routes also offer vehicle reservations.

People using state highways to get to the ferry terminal should plan ahead for potential backups and delays with real-time traffic information on the WSDOT traffic app for mobile devices.

WSF, a division of the Washington State Department of Transportation, is the largest ferry system in the U.S. and safely and efficiently carries nearly tens of millions of people a year through some of the most majestic scenery in the world. The system will be celebrating its 70th anniversary Tuesday, June 1. For breaking news and the latest information, follow WSF on Twitter and Facebook.

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