BC Ferries is ‘trialling’ the use of debit cards as a form on payment onboard ‘select vessels’ after 58 years in business. (Contributed)

BC Ferries begins taking debit in two-month pilot project

Company is giving customers option to use Interac on two-month trial on select vessels

Today might be the day the government made cannabis legal, but a much more exciting development at BC Ferries has made a journey onboard the vessels smoothing sailing.

RELATED: Behind the wheel of a B.C. Ferries ferry

After 58 years in business, and countless disgruntled customers, BC Ferries is now accepting Interac payments on some ferries.

“I think people are like ‘hey it’s about time,’” says Darin Guenette, BC Ferries public affairs manager.

A soft launch on the Spirit of British Columbia Wednesday meant customers boarded to find signs on Moneris terminals saying the company is “trialling the use of debit cards on board select vessels” on the Tsawwassen to Swartz Bay routes for a period of two months.

Previously, ticket agents at ferry terminals and onboard purchases were only available via credit card or cash. The company has said it did not enable debit use because the technology was too slow and would lead to sailing delays.

“You get in between the Gulf Islands and there are some dead spots,” Guenette explains, of the connectivity issues.

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

BC Ferries installed self-serve kiosks in the four major ferry terminals – Tsawwassen, Swartz Bay, Horsehoe Bay, Departure Bay and Duke Point – giving walk-on passengers the option to pay with debit.

“If it turns out the network connectivity is not there, we’ll have to stop and assess and fix,” Guenette says.

And, don’t worry – the technology required to provide debit service won’t run on wi fi or impact the current wi fi BC Ferries makes available during sailings.

“We’d like to see it work for customers,” Guenette says. “The more options the better.”


@kristyn_anthony
kristyn.anthony@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Woman killed in head-on crash near Vanderhoof

RCMP say driver crossed the centre line and hit a loaded fuel tanker truck

African Children’s Choir making a difference in the world

Waroto Children’s Choir celebrate Christ and caring for community on six month world tour

Snowpack at normal levels, but El Niño is lurking

Despite a warmer than usual winter that has produced a dearth of… Continue reading

Letter: New party with a strong platform could form majority government in B.C.

Voters fed up with BC’s political parties open the door for a new party to enter BC politics

‘Tripod’ delays access to Unist’ot’en camp

Social media rumours of cultural significance quashed, meaning police “exclusion zones” should end.

Rare ‘super blood wolf moon’ takes to the skies this Sunday

Celestial event happens only three times this century

Company issues lifetime ban after man jumps from cruise ship

Nick Naydev posted the video last week showing him standing on the balcony of the Symphony of the Seas

Parents in this B.C. city can no longer opt kids out of class for personal beliefs

Change comes as part of ‘big overhaul’ of school district’s learning resources policy approved by board

BC Hydro scammers bilked customers out of nearly $45,000 in 2018

Nearly 2,000 people reported scams to the utility, as they continue to be more common

Good news: Peak flu season over in B.C.

B.C. Centre for Disease Control says that while peak season is over, rates remain high this time of year

B.C. university students dumpster dive to shed light on food waste

Eating only from dumpsters, the students hope to raise money for food banks in Northern Canada

B.C. woman posts to Facebook after she and nephew reported missing for days

Roseanne Supernault says both she and her six-year-old nephew are fine and she has contacted police

Unruly passenger forces B.C.-bound flight to divert to Calgary

Police say charges are pending against a woman in her 40s

Inflation rises as higher airfares, veggie prices offset cheaper gas

Statistics Canada says inflation accelerated to two per cent in December

Most Read