B.C. Ferries mulls offering discounted reservation fees at off-peak times

B.C. Ferries will look at charging lower motor-vehicle reservation fees for less-busy sailings on major routes, a move aimed at shifting people away from travelling at peak times.

A system for the Swartz Bay-Tsawwassen, Duke Point-Tsawwassen and Departure Bay-Horseshoe Bay routes is in the works for the fall.

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“We’re still finalizing all the details,” said B.C. Ferries spokeswoman Deborah Marshall. Initially, she said, the company plans to offer discounts on reservation fees for off-peak sailings to people who book in advance. The aim is to free up space on busier sailings.

Current reservation prices vary from $10 to $21, depending on how far in advance you book.

“We want to roll this out slowly, so we want to start with the major routes,” Marshall said.

“We take reservations on the major routes already, so we will start with that and we will be soliciting customers for their feedback.”

Reservations are currently offered on the major routes, the northern routes and some others.

“But, for example, Gabriola we don’t take reservations, Swartz Bay to the Gulf Islands we don’t take reservations,” Marshall said.

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