On Thursday, August 10th the Commission took action to adjust ferry fares for the 2023/25 state budget cycle. The fares are set to meet requirements set forth in the Transportation Budget passed by the 2023 Legislature. The budget requires $418.6 million to be generated from fares over the two-year budget timeframe (July 1, 2023 – June 20, 2025), resulting in a need for an addition $28.8 million in fare revenues.
For context, see how much ferry fares (pdf 91kb) are contributing to ferry operational costs: fare revenues fund 57% of WSF’s ferry operations and the remaining 43% is funded from other statewide tax revenues. 100% of ferry capital costs (ferries and terminals) are funded from statewide tax revenues.
2023-2025 Fare Changes
Based upon input from Washington State Ferries, the Ferry Advisory Committee on Tariff (FAC-T), and the general public, the Commission adopted the following changes to ferry fares:
- Effective October 1, 2023: 4.25% general fare increase for passengers and vehicles.
- Effective October 1, 2024: 4.25% general fare increase for passengers and vehicles.
- Effective October 1, 2023–September 30, 2025: Increase the multiride discount by an additional 1%.
- Amended the regulation for a ferry fuel surcharge to ensure a ferry fuel surcharge can only be implemented after review and approval by the Commission.
Impact of Fare Changes by Route
- To see how this proposal will impact more common fares by route, please review this Summary Fare Table (pdf 710kb.)
- To see the detailed changes proposed for all fares and routes, along with the changes to the ferry fuel surcharge rule, please refer to the complete fare regulation (pdf 370kb) which contains the actual amendatory language.
Fare Setting Process Followed
- May 15–June 9: Public input gathered via online forum.
- May 23–June 7: WSF/WSTC Public Meetings on service update and possible fare changes.
- June 21: Commission selected fare proposal at Friday Harbor Commission meeting, for further public comment.
- June 21–July 30: Public comment period on fare proposal.
- August 10: Commission held final, in-person hearing to adopt fare changes.
- October 1: New fares take effect.