With traffic starting to rebound on B.C. Ferries as travel restrictions ease, a new deal for overheight vehicles has been announced to divert traffic from the busiest sailings.
Until Oct. 13, passengers with recreational vehicles over 2.1 metres high who prebook can save on fares for less-busy Tsawwassen-Swartz Bay and Tsawwassen-Duke Point sailings — those in the early morning and very late evening, midday during the week, Saturday afternoon and Sunday mornings.
The overheight fare is $76.10, which includes a free reservation. The usual fare is $94.10.
Sellouts on specific sailings are possible.
The special fare also includes a 50 per cent reduction in the cost per additional foot for lengths over 20 feet — from $6.75 to $3.38.
The fare is available only to passengers who book and pay in advance, and does not apply to drive-up purchases at ferry-terminal booths.
The promotion is intended for overheight passenger vehicles and overheight vehicles towing a boat or trailer, and does not include commercial vehicles or buses.
A full listing of applicable sailings is at beferries.com.
Saver fares for a standard vehicle and driver on select less-busy sailings start at $49, including a free reservation.
“As travel restrictions are lifted, we are ensuring fares are affordable for families who plan to travel with their overheight recreational vehicles this summer,” said Janet Carson, vice-president of marketing and customer experience for B.C. Ferries.
Carson said the discounted fare on overheight vehicles should help ease traffic on more popular sailings between Metro Vancouver and Vancouver Island by rewarding customers that travel at less-busy times.
“Shifting traffic on these routes will reduce overall sailing waits and provide greater travel certainty for all customers.”
B.C. Ferries spokeswoman Deborah Marshall said business is improving, but Tuesday passenger levels were still down 35 per cent and vehicle levels were down 13 per cent from 2019.
About a month ago, overall traffic was down as much as 50 per cent from the same time in 2019, and traffic was off about 80 per cent at the beginning of the pandemic.
Marshall said business is expected to be good through the summer because of pent-up demand for travel.