Updated: October 30, 2017
Seattle to Bainbridge Ferry Schedule – Weekday Schedule
The Seattle to Bainbridge route runs about every 50-55 minutes from Monday through Friday. The first ferry departs the terminal at Coleman Dock/Pier 52 at 5:30 a.m., and the last ferry leaves at 1:35 a.m., technically the next day. The last three ferries late at night are scheduled 1 hour 20 minutes apart, at 10:55 p.m., 12:15 a.m., and 1:35 a.m. Crossing time is 35 minutes.
Bainbridge to Seattle Ferry Schedule – Weekday Schedule
Ferries departing from Bainbridge begin earlier than those on the Seattle side to accommodate people who live on the island and work in the city. The first ferries leave at 4:45, 5:20, and 6:20 a.m. From the 7:05 a.m. ferry onward, they run about every 50-55 minutes throughout the rest of the day. The last few ferries at night are spread further apart at 9:45 p.m., 11:35 p.m., and 12:55 a.m. the following day. Crossing time is 35 minutes.
Seattle to Bainbridge Ferry Schedule – Weekend/Holiday Schedule
On Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays, the ferry runs a little later, with the first trip to Bainbridge leaving at 6:10 a.m. and the final trip departing at 2:10 a.m. the following day. Between the first and second ferry in the morning, there is a 1 hour 45 minute gap, with the second ferry leaving at 7:55 a.m. After that the ferries run about every 50-55 minutes throughout the day until late at night. The last few ferries are more unevenly spaced at 10:40 p.m., 11:15 p.m., 12:45 a.m., and 2:10 a.m. Crossing time is 35 minutes.
• Always double check the official website for holiday schedules, as they are subject to change.
Bainbridge to Seattle Ferry Schedule – Weekend/Holiday Schedule
On Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays, the ferry departs later in the morning and runs until later in the night. The first departure is at 5:20 a.m. and the final one is at 1:25 a.m. the next day. The first few ferries leave at irregular intervals: 5:20, 7:05, 8:45, and 9:45 a.m. From then on, then ferries run about every 50-55 minutes until 9:45 p.m. The last few late night ferries have longer gaps between them, departing at 10:30 p.m., midnight, and 1:25 a.m. the next day. Crossing time is 35 minutes.
• Always double check the official website for holiday schedules, as they are subject to change.
The ferry from Seattle to Bainbridge Island costs $8.20 for adults. Fares for seniors (over 65) and children (6-18 years) are half price, only $4.10. Children 5 and under ride free.
Rates are for one-way tickets. The return trip from Bainbridge back to Seattle is free of charge.
Tickets may be purchased at the terminal on the day of travel using cash or card. Senior, disabled, and child tickets are not available at the self-serve kiosk; they must be purchased at the ticket window. Reservations cannot be made in advance, but it is rare that a ferry will fill up completely for walk on passengers. On busy days it may fill up with cars, though, so plan on arriving at least 20 minutes early if traveling with a vehicle. Boarding for walk-on passengers ends 5 minutes before the ferry’s scheduled departure time.
Though reservations cannot be made ahead of time, single or multi-ride tickets for adults may be purchased online in advance with a credit or debit card and received via email. They are valid for 90 days after purchase. Tickets for seniors and children are not available online.
Child (6-18): $4.10
Child (0-5): Free
Seniors (65+): $4.10
Buying Tickets in Advance
Tickets may be purchased online in advance of travel. This is not necessary, but it does save time by avoiding the ticketing line at the terminal, which can be long; especially on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday afternoons in July and August. Though tickets may be bought in advance, reservations may not be made. The ferry operates on a first come, first served basis.
Ferries are almost never sold out for walk on passengers, including those bringing bicycles. But for those driving onto the ferry, there is occasionally some congestion – especially during the summer months. The busiest times for drivers headed from Seattle to Bainbridge are Fridays from 2:00 to 7:30p.m. and Saturdays from 11:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Midday Sunday and weekday evening rush hours can see a good deal of car congestion, too.
From Bainbridge to Seattle, the most congested times are on Sundays from 11:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Leave early in the morning to avoid heavy car traffic. Saturdays can be congested in the late afternoons, and weekday mornings from 6:30-9:30a.m. are also busier than average.
Despite these busier times, significant delays are rare. The Seattle-Bainbridge route typically leaves on time or within two minutes past scheduled departure. It is very rare for the ferry to leave more than ten minutes late.
The Seattle-Bainbridge Island ferry does not take reservations for drivers. Anyone planning on ferrying over with their vehicle should arrive at least 20 minutes before the ferry’s scheduled departure time – an hour or more in advance during commonly congested times in the summer. Usually cars are loaded in the order of arrival, though sometimes vehicles may be shuffled to accommodate oversized trucks. Vehicle boarding ends two minutes before the ferry’s scheduled departure time.
The rate for compact cars (up to 14 feet) is $14.30, inclusive of the driver’s fare. For standard sized cars, SUVs, and mid-sized trucks (up to 22 feet), the rate is $18.20. Disabled and senior driver rates for the same vehicles as above are $12.25 and $16.15, respectively.
Motorcycle and scooter rates, inclusive of driver, are $7.90 for adults and $5.85 for senior and disabled drivers.
If traveling with bikes racked on the car, there is no extra charge, as long as the total length does not exceed the 14 foot or 22 foot size limits.
Traveling With Kids
The ferry is always an exciting ride for kids, and downtown Winslow offers tons of family friendly sights, attractions, and dining. Rates for children ages 6-18 are only $4.10 from Seattle to Bainbridge; the return trip is free of charge. Kids 5 years and under ride free both ways.
There is no official minimum age for kids to travel without parents; however, there is no staff member to accompany minors on board. With that in mind, a day trip to Bainbridge can be a fun and safe trip for teens to explore on their own or with their younger siblings tagging along.
Taking a Bike On Board
Biking is one of the best ways to explore Bainbridge Island. It’s easy to bike through all of downtown to explore the local shops. Coastal trails, an estuary, and rolling hills offer a variety of options for beginning and expert cyclists. Travelers can rent a bike on the island or simply bring one over on the ferry. Bringing a bike costs only $1 for one-way or $2 for a round trip.
Cyclists board first and disembark first. Arrive twenty minutes early to board the ferry ahead of cars; late bike arrivals will have to wait to board until after all other vehicles have been loaded. Cyclists will enter through the marked bicycle entrance through the tollbooth on the far right, then ride to the designated waiting area ahead of the cars. After riding onboard, you’ll park at the bow end of the car deck and lock up. Arrival will be announced by loudspeaker, and cyclists will head back down to retrieve their bikes and ride off into downtown Winslow.
Food On Board Ferry (or at the ferry terminal)
There is a variety of restaurants and cafes inside the Seattle ferry terminal, from quick grab-and-go snack shacks to a chill wine bar and a casual coffee shop. Fast food options include Subway, Taco del Mar, Wasabi Express, and the Waterfront Creamery. Puget Sound Provisions offers beer, wine, soda, and snacks to go, plus things you might’ve forgotten to pack, like sunscreen or sunglasses.
Once on board, travelers will find a small cafeteria-style restaurant, serving Ivar’s chowders and soups, bakery sweets and ice cream, pre-made salads and snacks. Beer, wine, and cider area also served but must be consumed before disembarking. There is also a small espresso bar serving hot, fresh coffee and tea. Several vending machines here offer snacks, soda, and coffee. All of the food options are located midship in the main passenger lounge area.
Location of Terminal/Getting to Terminal
The ferry terminal is just a 5 minute walk from Pioneer Square and a 15 minute walk from Pike Place Market and Downtown. To get there by bus, take the 101, 150, 255, or the Link Light Rail from Westlake Station tunnel and get off at Pioneer Square Station. From there, walk west on Yesler Way for 8 minutes to arrive at the ferry terminal at Pier 52/Colman Dock. Another option is to take a surface bus via route 3, 7, 14, 40, 62, or 70 from 3rd Avenue & Pine Street. Get off at Marion Street and walk 6 minutes southwest, taking the elevated pedestrian bridge to the ferry terminal. Any of these buses will get you there in 13-18 minutes and costs $2.50.
Location of Bainbridge Ferry Terminal
The Seattle-Bainbridge ferry terminal (also called Colman Dock, or Pier 52) is located at 801 Alaskan Way on the northwest corner of Pioneer Square at the south end of the Waterfront. From the terminal, 10 minutes’ walk north will get you to the Seattle Great Wheel and Wings Over Washington; another 5 minutes will get you to the Seattle Aquarium. The Smith Tower is directly east of the ferry, just 5 minutes on foot via Yesler Way. To the southeast of the terminal, just 10 minutes’ walk away, you’ll find the historic Pioneer Square neighborhood, with trendy restaurants, bars, and attractions like the Klondike Gold Rush Museum and the Underground Tour. Just 5 more minutes walking in the same direction leads to Chinatown/International District, with several unique shops and museums, great food, and the historic Panama Hotel.
Parking at Terminal
The closest parking to the ferry terminal is the Commuter Centre lot (811 Western Ave) with rates of $5.00 per hour. This is a good option for half day trips. A great option is just two blocks away at the ABM First and Columbia Garage (721 1st Ave). This spot offers parking at a better rate, only $3.00 per hour, but they have a four hour limit. After four hours, cars are charged $25.00, whether parked for 4 or 24 hours. A third option at Waterfront Place (1101 Western Ave) offers great rates for longer trips, at $18.00 for 6 hours, $21.00 for 10 hours, or $24.00 for 24 hours. For short trips, their rates are high at $6.00 for one hour. Only park here for full day trips to Bainbridge.
If you don’t mind a little further walk, there are several garages offering lower rates in the Pioneer Square and Waterfront neighborhoods. Try the Courtyard Seattle Downtown/Pioneer Square (612 2nd Ave) or the LAZ- Butler Garage (160 James Street), both offering full day rates for $20.00. These two lots, as well as the aforementioned ABM First and Columbia Garage, take reservations; book ahead online.
Street parking is available near the terminal, but there is a time limit of 2 hours. Though parking is free on Sundays, the time limit is still enforced. Seattle Parking Enforcement does not mess around and will ticket cars parked over the time limit! Street parking is not recommended when taking the Bainbridge ferry.
Taking the Ferry to Bainbridge Island