Are Commuters the Backbone of the Ferry System?May 22nd, 2008 by ed friedrich
I really didn’t get into the story about the ferry customer
survey enough on Thursday. Lots of commenters couldn’t believe that
most of the people riding ferries aren’t commuters. I don’t know
about that, either. It was a surprise to the Transportation
Commission, too, which seemed to welcome the news.
One finding showed 13 percent of riders take 45 or more one-way trips per month and 22 percent take 25 to 44 trips. That’s 35 percent that ride more than 24 times per month. So not only are the commuters not the majority, they also get discounted prices.
Only 37 percent of trip purposes systemwide were for commute to work or school. Bainbridge was 41 percent, Bremerton 49 percent, Kingston 30 percent and Southworth 48 percent.
Another interesting item was that 44 percent of Bainbridge riders were walk-ons and 62 percent at Bremerton, both of which dump into downtown Seattle. The other routes were way lower.
The state wants to shift riders out of peak times so it can stretch it’s boats and terminals, but only 44 percent of people travel during peak times and only 4 percent say they have the flexibility to move to non-peak.
Somewhat surprisingly, 65 percent of riders say they are at least somewhat satisfied with ferry service. Only 23 percent are somewhat dissatisfied or extremely dissatisfied.