The Transportation Commission is responsible for setting ferry fares and policies for Washington State Ferries.
Created in 1951, the Washington State Ferry system is the largest ferry system in the United States and the third largest system in the world. Nearly 23 million people ride the ferries each year. There are 20 terminals located on nine routes throughout the Puget Sound, from the San Juan Islands in the North Sound to Pt. Defiance in Tacoma, Washington.
2011 Ferry Fare Outcome
The Transportation Commission adopted changes to current ferry fares on August 24, 2011. This is the first step towards meeting an overall revenue target of $310 million that must be raised by ferry fares between July 1, 2011 and June 30, 2013 as required by the state transportation budget.
Detailed Text of Commission's Fare changes
The full text of the Commission's adopted changes in the State Administrative Code (pdf 229kb) is available. This document was filed with the State Code Reviser's Office and is what will be officially placed in the Washington State Administrative Code.
The Commission's fare summary has five key elements related to a general fare increase, car size categories, bike permits, a fuel surcharge and a capital surcharge. A summary of the changes (pdf 245kb) is available which gives an overview of the adopted fares.
Five Key Elements
General Fare Increase: Details are provided on the general fare increase and WSF's operating budget (pdf 198kb).
Vehicle Size Categories: Deatils are provided on the changes to fares for vehicles under 30 feet (pdf 218kb).
Capital Surcharge: Details are provided on the capital surcharge (pdf 235kb).
Bicycle Fees: Details are provided on the changes to the bicycle surcharge and bicycle permit fees (pdf 146kb).
Fuel Surcharge: Details are provided on the fuel surcharge (pdf 235kb).
Fare Tables 2011 and 2012
This will impact the various fares categories and routes differently. To better understand specifically how the proposal may impact your trip, the following fare tables provide further detail:
SUMMARY fare tables for October 2011 & May 2012
These tables cover the most common fares for the base full-fare, peak season full fare, and multi-ride media fares. The tables also indicate the capital surcharge impact (NOTE: The capital surcharge will be assessed on each ferry fare systemwide, one-way or round trip).
DETAILED Fare Tables for October 2011 & May 2012
These tables provide the base passenger and vehicle fares for all of the fare categories (NOTE: The 25 cent capital surcharge is not included in the fares displayed on these tables. The surcharge will be added on to each ferry fare systemwide, one-way or round trip).
Current Ferry Fares
Fares are based on the route's geographical location, the length, width, and height of your vehicle, as well as the length of time you will be traveling on board our ferry. Fares are also calculated based on the age or disability of each passenger and are collected either for round trip travel or one-way travel, depending on the departure terminal. Note that seniors, persons with disabilities and passengers with a Medicare card, or other eligibility verification, are eligible for travel at half the regular passenger fare rate. General Fare Information is available on the WSF website.
- Current Fare Information
- Passenger Ferry Fares
- Vehicles Under 20’, Motorcycle and Stowage Ferry Fares
- Oversize Vehicle Ferry Fares
- Charter rates for vessels
Ferry Fare Setting
The Commission and Washington State Ferries established a Ferry Advisory Committee - Tariff (FACT) body to provide ferry riders direct input into the fare setting process. Members of this body come from each local Ferry Advisory Committee representing the communities ferries serve.
General Information About Washington State Ferries
To get detailed information on ferry schedules, route maps, ticket information, reservations, wait times and other operational information, please visit Washington State Ferries.
Ferry Related Studies
2010 Ferry Riders Opinion Group (FROG)
The Commission is required under current law to conduct surveys of ferry customers every two years. The Commission is currently conducting its 2010 survey of ferry riders. Get more information on the survey results and how to join our Ferry Riders Opinion Group (FROG).
2010 Ferry Fuel Surcharge Report and Presentation
2009 Business Analysis of Naming Rights
2008 Ferry Customer Survey
The Commission conducted a year-long survey effort that was concluded in 2008. The surveys were provided to all ferry customers including freight customers, recreational riders, commuters and regular riders. See the results of the Ferry Customer Survey.
2008 Long-Term Ferry Finance Study
The Legislature directed the Commission to conduct a study aimed at identifying and evaluating long-term funding alternatives for the Washington state ferry system. 2008 Long-Term Ferry Finance Study