As the unofficial official start to the summer season, the May Long weekend is a busy time for travellers, particularly when it comes to ferry crossings. As such, BC Ferries said it is busy preparing for the upcoming Victoria Day long weekend by adding 115 extra sailings on what it says are its most popular routes.
The extra sailings will be in effect from Thursday, May 17 to Tuesday, May 22.
BC Ferries said the most popular travel times for the long weekend are expected to be Thursday and Friday afternoon, as well as Saturday morning.
“Historically, the holiday Monday is the most desired time for travellers returning from
Vancouver Island and the Sunshine Coast,” said BC Ferries in a statement.
Sailing waits should be expected at peak times for customers travelling without a reservation.
Metro Vancouver – Victoria route:
• 73 extra sailings are scheduled on the Tsawwassen – Swartz Bay route, including some 6 am, 10 pm sailings as well as a 10:50 pm sailing departing Swartz Bay on Monday, May 21
Four vessels will provide hourly service on the Tsawwassen – Swartz Bay route on the Victoria Day long weekend. For customers travelling to and from the mid-island, the Tsawwassen – Duke Point route may also be a good option.
West Vancouver – Mid Island/Sunshine Coast routes:
• 18 extra sailings are scheduled on the Horseshoe Bay – Departure Bay route
• 12 extra sailings are scheduled on the Horseshoe Bay – Langdale route
• 12 extra sailings are scheduled on the Earls Cove – Saltery Bay route
Over at Horseshoe Bay, the Queen of Oak Bay, Queen of Cowichan, Queen of Surrey, and Queen of Coquitlam will service both the Departure Bay and Langdale routes for the long weekend. The Queen of Capilano will sail as usual on the Bowen Island route.
Southern Gulf Islands:
Regular schedules resume in the Southern Gulf Islands in time for the long weekend with the return to service of the Queen of Cumberland on Friday, May 18.
This vessel was temporarily removed from service last month due to a malfunction with a rescue boat davit.
This davit is being replaced and the vessel will be re-certified prior to returning to service.