Rider Guide

Quick Start Guide

So you want to ride the San Francisco Bay Ferry? Here’s what you should know.

Need a little more info? Click the banners below to expand those sections.

Routes and Schedules imageRoutes & Schedules

  • We offer ferry service with routes connecting San Francisco to Oakland, Alameda, Harbor Bay and Vallejo and a route connecting South San Francisco to Alameda and Oakland
  • All routes offer weekday commute service
  • Alameda/Oakland and Vallejo service also provide midday, evening and weekend departures
  • Direct service to Oracle Park from Alameda, Oakland and Vallejo is available for Giants games

How long does the ferry take?

It depends on the route. Check our schedules for route-specific info.

Are ferries usually on time?

Yes! Please note that the schedules indicate departure times.  We recommend that you arrive at the terminal at least five minutes prior to the scheduled departure in order to board. You can also receive BayAlerts by downloading the San Francisco Bay Ferry app on Apple and Android devices. More info can be found on our Rider Alerts page. 

Do ferries run on holidays?

There is no ferry service systemwide on New Year’s Day, Thanksgiving Day or Christmas Day. Special schedules may be in effect for the following holidays: Presidents' Day Weekend, Easter, Memorial Day, Fourth of July, Labor Day, Veterans' Day and the day after Thanksgiving. Special schedules may also be in effect for Fleet Week and at other times. Check the latest holiday and special schedules on our Holiday Schedules Page

Are you running Oracle Park service for [insert concert or special event]?

We typically do not run Oracle Park service other than for Giants baseball games. If we do, this will be promoted in our Media Center, on our social media channels and through our General Service Info email subscription. To sign up for this email, visit our Rider Alerts page

Do you run service to Angel Island, Alcatraz or Marin County?

No. Private operators serve Alcatraz. Golden Gate Ferry operates public ferry service between San Francisco and Marin County (Sausalito, Larkspur and Tiburon) as well as service between San Francisco and Angel Island.

Is the Pier 41 terminal near Pier 39 and Fisherman’s Wharf?

Yes, the terminal is one block from Pier 39 and three blocks from Fisherman’s Wharf.

Tickets and Payment imageTickets & Payment

  • Tickets for regularly scheduled ferry service can be purchased via the San Francisco Bay Ferry mobile app. 
  • All regularly scheduled ferry service is first come, first served. 
  • Tickets for Oracle Park and Chase Center service is by reservation only.

Can I reserve a spot on a departure?

As a public transit provider, we do not reserve seats. Boarding our vessels is first come, first served. Reservations are only available for direct Oracle Park and Chase Center service.

Do you have youth, senior or disabled discounts?

Yes. See our Fares & Tickets page for details. Children under the age of 5 years old ride for free with a paying adult.

What’s Clipper and why should I use it on the ferry?

Clipper is the Bay Area’s all-in-one transit payment solution and the easiest way to pay your ferry fare. You load value on your account or connect it to a credit or debit card. You can then use Clipper on 23 different transit agencies in the Bay Area, including San Francisco Bay Ferry. You can register a new account and add it your mobile wallet or buy a new plastic card at Bay Crossings in the Ferry Building, the Clipper machines at the Golden Gate Ferry Terminal in San Francisco (just north of our terminal) or at any BART station. See more info and learn how to use Clipper on the ferry.

Can I buy ferry tickets through an app?

Yes. Tickets are available through the San Francisco Bay Ferry app for Apple and Android devices. Tickets can be purchased for regularly scheduled service and Oracle Park service. More information can be found on our Tickets & App page. 

Where can I get paper tickets?

Paper tickets can be purchased at Bay Crossings in the Ferry Building. If you don't have Clipper and cannot use the San Francisco Bay Ferry app, you can also buy paper tickets onboard. Just tell the deckhand you need to buy a paper ticket when you board.

Do you offer monthly passes or frequent rider discounts?

We do not currently offer multi-use passes on any route.

Conduct and Courtesy imagePassenger Conduct & Courtesy

Respecting your fellow passengers will help to ensure everyone enjoys a safe, pleasant trip. Here are the basics from our Passenger Code of Conduct:

  • No smoking or vaping allowed on board or within 25 feet of a terminal
  • Pets other than service animals must be non-disruptive and in a completely enclosed cage or carrying case that fits on the passenger’s lap (see our full pet policy in the Passenger Code of Conduct)
  • No weapons, firearms or explosive materials allowed on board or at terminal
  • Children under age 13 must be accompanied by adult
  • School groups must have at least one adult chaperone per four children
  • Occupy one seat only
  • No disruptive or aggressive behavior
  • No panhandling, soliciting or selling
  • No cutting or saving spots in line

See our full Passenger Code of Conduct.

Amenities imageFerry Amenities & Info

Is there Wi-Fi on board?

San Francisco Bay Ferry offers free Wi-Fi access on board all vessels. However, keep in mind that bandwidth is limited and there are network dead spots in various parts of the Bay. We encourage you to save work offline during your ferry ride.

Are the ferries ADA compliant?

Absolutely. All vessels are wheelchair accessible and are equipped with a wheelchair accessible restroom. Staff is available to provide assistance to passengers as they board. See more information on our ferry accessibility page.

There’s a snack bar?

Yes! Snacks and beverages are available on certain trips. Learn when and on what trips the snack bare is open.  

Tell me about your boats.

We currently operate 16 vessels with four more on the way and plans to build even more. Learn more about our fleet.

Bikes, Transit and Parking imageBikes, Transit & Parking

Information on bikes, scooters and other mobility devices can be found on our Bikes & Scooters Page. 

Are bicycles allowed on board?

Yes, each vessel has bike racks. Space may be limited on some departures, so be sure to arrive early. We also offer secure bike lockers at many terminals. See our Terminals page for details. All bikes, including folding bikes, should be stowed in the bike rack area on the aft deck. Ask crew members for assistance if necessary.

What about electric bicycles and scooters?

Yes, these are also allowed. If you have an unusual or large bike or scooter, please check with us first. Motorized scooters and board and folding bikes should be stowed in the bike rack area on the aft deck. Scooters are allowed inside the passenger cabin however charging these are prohibited onboard the vessel at all times. Ask crew members for assistance if necessary. 

What about gasoline-powered bikes, scooters or mopeds?

Absolutely no gas-powered vehicles are allowed on board per U.S. Coast Guard regulations.

Can I get to ferry terminals via transit?

Yes! See our Terminals page to find connecting transit information.

Do you offer transfer discounts?

AC Transit, MUNI and SolTrans riders can benefit from transfer discounts when using the Clipper Card. See our Fares & Tickets page for this information.

Is there free parking at ferry terminals?

Limited free parking is available at certain terminals. Other terminals have only paid parking. See our Terminals page for details.

Does ferry parking fill up?

It depends on the terminal. See our Terminals page for details.  As with boarding the ferry, parking is first come, first served.

I’m spending the night in San Francisco. Is overnight parking available at ferry terminals?

Overnight parking is only permitted at the paid, city-run lots near the Vallejo Ferry Terminal.

Lost and Found imageLost & Found

Please be sure to collect your belongings before you leave the ferry at the end of your ride. We are not responsible for misplaced items.

If you have lost an item aboard the ferry or at a ferry terminal, please call the following numbers.

For Vallejo service: (707) 643-3779

All other routes and terminals: (415) 705-8205