BC Ferries to increase fares slightly, eliminating fuel rebate

Nov 3 2021, 6:19 pm

A small fare increase on BC Ferries is set to begin at the start of next month due to changing market conditions and rising fuel costs.

The 0.5% rebate applied to fares will be eliminated to cover rising operating costs related to fuel starting on December 1, 2021.

Without the rebate, fares will increase by 10 cents per adult passenger and 30 cents per vehicle on routes from Metro Vancouver to Vancouver Island. Increases of about five cents per adult and 10 cents for a vehicle on inter-island routes would also be seen.

Only the routes from Port Hardy to Prince Rupert, Prince Rupert to Haida Gwaii, and Port Hardy to Central Coast will see their fuel rebate remain at 1.5% until further notice as they have a separate mechanism on fluctuating fuel costs.

The fuel rebate and surcharge mechanism on fares was first implemented 17 years ago to allow the ferry corporation to adjust to changing fuel prices.

When fuel prices are lower, the savings are passed on to passengers through a fuel rebate. But when fuel prices are higher, a fuel surcharge is in place to cover the additional cost of fuel only.

Next month’s changes will be an adjustment of the 1.5% fuel rebate implemented on April 1, 2020, when fuel costs saw a downward trend from a plunge in global transportation demand due to the COVID-19 pandemic’s sudden onset.

The rebate was previously reduced on August 1, 2021, from 1.5% to 0.5%, in response to rising fuel costs earlier this year.

Kenneth ChanKenneth Chan

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