Bay Ferries release fees for high-speed N.S. to Maine ferry service
Bay Ferries released its fare schedule Monday for the high speed CAT ferry service between Yarmouth, N.S., and Portland, Maine.
The company says a round trip ticket for an adult with or without a vehicle will cost US$194, while seniors will pay US$186 return and a round-trip ticket for children six years old and up will cost US$118.
The cost of a return trip for vehicles up to 20 feet long will be US$275, although Nova Scotia residents receive US$100 off the vehicle fare, excluding Friday and Sunday, for the entire season.
Tickets officially went on sale Monday afternoon, but not without a glitch. Bookings were available first thing in the morning on the Bay Ferries website, but company officials say that wasn't supposed to happen.
"We have an experienced operator, they will be able to deal with whatever minor obstacles present themselves, and we have confidence in their ability to really make this work," said Yarmouth MLA Zach Churchill.
The company says the fares are about the same as those charged before the previous high-speed service was discontinued in 2009.
Under a deal announced last month, Nova Scotia taxpayers will pay at least $32.7 million over the next two years to refloat the ferry service.
The deal came five months after the province dumped the previous operator, Nova Star Cruises, after it failed to meet passenger targets and soaked up $39.5 million in provincial subsidies during its two years of service.
“We want our people to be able to use the ferry as well, but the big deal right now is to make sure that we have the Americans,” said Yarmouth Mayor Pam Mood.
Tourism operators in the area say they're optimistic about the upcoming season, especially with the cat docking in Yarmouth overnight and the low dollar.
"It just makes it so much more convenient for people to travel," said Yarmouth Bed and Breakfast owner Twyla Rogers.
Rogers says she received her first booking online from travellers sailing in on the new ferry.
"I'm staying optimistic. I think there's going to be a lot of travellers – it's going to be busy," said Rogers.
The first ferry run is scheduled for June 15th.
With files from The Canadian Press and CTV Atlantic’s Suzette Belliveau.