Thanksgiving travelers planning a state ferry ride over the holiday weekend should prepare for busy holiday sailings and keep updated with the latest sailing schedules online. If crewing allows, more daily sailings may be added on routes operating reduced service.
State Ferries temporarily switched to alternate service schedules on those runs on Oct. 16 to reduce last-minute sailing cancellations caused by crew shortages.
Starting Friday, Nov. 19, a fourth boat will be added on the Anacortes/San Juan Islands run to operate a full fall schedule on a trial basis. New vehicle reservations for the route remain suspended. All vehicles will be loaded on a first-come, first-served basis, but people with existing reservations will be prioritized over those without one.
Reservations are still available for the Port Townsend/Coupeville run. People traveling standby without a reservation may encounter delays and should get to the terminal early.
Ferries are popular every holiday weekend and people boarding a ferry by vehicle should be prepared for long waits. The busiest sailings will likely be westbound (or onto an island) Wednesday afternoon, Nov. 24, through Thursday morning, Nov. 25, then eastbound (or off island) Thursday afternoon through Friday, Nov. 26. To reduce or eliminate waiting, riders may consider taking an early morning or late night sailing or walking on.
On Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 25, there will be a few schedule changes for the Point Defiance/Tahlequah run, along with the Edmonds/Kingston and Mukilteo/Clinton routes if supplemental service is added. Holiday sailings are marked on the schedule page for each route.