Loading articles...

Busy Thanksgiving weekend begins for BC Ferries despite COVID-19

Citynews 1130 Vancouver

Last Updated Oct 9, 2020 at 12:06 pm PST

FILE - BC Ferries. (Courtesy Twitter/BC Ferries)

The Thanksgiving weekend is already getting busy for BC Ferries

Traffic and delays are expected until Tuesday, so BC Ferries recommends booking ahead, travelling at slower times

Masks, face coverings are mandatory

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — Sailings on BC Ferries are starting to fill up over the Thanksgiving long weekend despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and recommendations to keep celebrations local this year.

Tessa Humphries with BC Ferries says this time of year is typically busy.

She says delays and traffic are expected until Tuesday, but extra health and safety precautions are being taken.

“We have, on certain vessels, been able to open up additional areas that were previously closed, so that includes the Pacific Buffet and the Seawest Lounge,” she says. “If we reach a certain passenger capacity we do have the ability to open up those areas to allow for passengers to spread out.”

Humphries says most travellers will be going through the Tsawwassen and Horseshoe Bay terminals, so booking ahead is a good idea.

“We do still have a restriction on passenger capacity of about, on average, 70 per cent,” she says, adding if a vessel hits that capacity, there could be sailing waits for foot passengers.

“We are advising foot passengers travelling this weekend to please check the weather forecast before you travel. Bring an umbrella, bring an extra jacket if necessary, as we may have to queue passengers outside,” Humphries says.

She also recommends travelling during less popular times to avoid delays, which is usually earlier in the morning or later in the evening.

But customers who book in advance shouldn’t have to worry about delays, she adds.

Humphries reminds travellers that masks and face coverings are mandatory on board the ferries and at the terminals.

-With files from Toby Kerr