Washington State Ferries will temporarily suspend service to Sidney as part of its 2020 winter schedule. (Black Press Media File)

Washington State Ferries suspends service to Sidney for winter

Seasonal service suspension starts Jan. 5 with service resuming March 29, 2020

A new sailing schedule marks the temporary end of a ferry run connecting the Saanich Peninsula with the United States.

Washington State Ferries (WSF) will temporarily suspend its international route between Sidney and Anacortes, WA. on Jan. 5 until March 28 as part of its upcoming 2020 winter schedule, as it has done in the past. Service resumes March 29.

RELATED: Washington State Ferries to suspend service to Sidney for almost a month

WSF had suspended its international service to Sidney for almost a full month in November due to lack of vessels. Service resumed in early December in time for holiday traffic.

Looking at available statistics, WSF recorded 120,963 total riders (vehicles plus passengers) on the Sidney route during the first nine months of 2019, with just over 70 of that ridership happening between July 1 and Sept. 30, 2019. WSF generally sails two vessels during the busy summer period. In 2018, the total ridership for the route topped 130,003.

Looking at the big picture, the Sidney run accounts for a fraction of the overall WSF system — 0.5 per cent based on 2018, when the system carried 24.687 million riders, with vehicles accounting for 10.7 million, passengers for 13.9 million.

When the Sidney run resumes at the end of March 2020, fares are set to rise just a few weeks later, starting May 1. It will be second increase in 10 month’s time.

A full break-down is available of various fees is available here.

RELATED: Fares for ferry between United States and Sidney rise Oct. 1


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