B.C. BUDGET: Fare freeze, free travel for seniors on BC Ferries

A complete fare freeze will be put into place on major routes, and fares will be rolled back on smaller routes by 15 per cent

  • Feb. 20, 2018 3:30 p.m.

One of the promises made by the NDP during last spring’s provincial election was putting a cap on BC Ferries’ rates that affect tens of thousands of people living on Vancouver Island and the many smaller islands alongside B.C.’s western coastline.

The province committed to those actions Tuesday in their 2018 budget announcement by referring to BC Ferries as part of the provincial highway system, and by agreeing to fare relief for coastal routes as of April 1, 2018.

READ MORE: Election 2017 – Parties look to change B.C.’s ferry system

READ MORE: Ferry freeze expected in the spring

“Ferry costs have skyrocketed, putting Islanders at a disadvantage that is both costly and unfair. Transportation and businesses that transport good are feeling the pinch too,” Finance Minister Carole James said.

A complete fare freeze will be put into place on all three major routes from Greater Vancouver to Victoria and to Nanaimo and fares will be rolled back on smaller routes by 15 per cent.

Seniors will also essentially ride free Monday through Thursday, with a 100-per-cent fare discount rate in place.

The B.C. Liberal Party was first to announce potential changes to ferry rates on the eve of the 2017 election, announcing a tax break for frequent sailors as part of their “Vancouver Island” platform.

The NDP quickly followed with their own platform that also promised the key points offered up in Tuesday’s budget.

The Green Party had suggested making BC Ferries a Crown corporation at the time.



ragnar.haagen@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Tweedsmuir Park wildfires grow to encompass more than 200,000 hectares

Four fires now managed under one as Tweedsmuir Complex, evacation orders and alerts still in place

‘Beauty amongst such tragedy:’ B.C. photographer captures nature’s trifecta

David Luggi’s photo from a beach in Fraser Lake shows Shovel Lake wildfire, Big Dipper and an aurora

B.C. declares state of emergency as more than 560 wildfires rage

This is only the fourth state of emergency ever issued during a fire season

UPDATE: 5 injured in plane crash following Abbotsford International Airshow

One in critical condition in incident involving vintage plane

B.C. team stays alive in Little League World Series after another nail-biter

Surrey-based squad scored a 6-4 win over Mexico reps in Williamsport on Monday

Kids, seniors at risk as smoke from distant fires hangs over parts of B.C.

B.C. Centre for Disease Control says children’s lungs don’t fully develop until about age 10

B.C. mother charged in 7-year-old daughter’s death appears in court

The 36-year-old mother, of Langley’s Aaliyah Rosa, has been charged with second-degree murder

VIDEO: Teen soccer phenomenon Alphonso Davies to visit B.C. kids camp

The 17-year-old Vancouver Whitecap player is one of the youngest players in MLS history

New plan to lift more than two million people past the poverty line

Anti-poverty strategy will aim for 50 per cent cut in low-income rates: source

Liberals scrap lottery system for reuniting immigrants with their parents

Lottery for parent sponsorship to be replaced, more applications to be accepted

Bear kills off-leash dog in B.C. park

There have been nearly 200 pet or livestock and bear encounters so far this year

Most Read