• Vessel 1

  • Frequently Asked Questions


  • Where can I find your schedule, how far in advance can I book? 
    You can find our schedule here.
    Reservations can currently be made for travel until March 31, 2018. 

    Are reservations required to travel on the ferry?
    Reservations are highly recommended as it helps us to better meet your travel plans.  Arriving at the terminal without a confirmed reservation will limit your sailing and accommodation options.

    How can I make a reservation?
    You can make your reservation online or by calling 1-800-341-7981 or directly at 1-902-794-5254.

    When should I make my reservation?
    We strongly recommend passengers make a reservation as early as possible as the preferred sailing times and accommodations are more likely to be available.

    What are your rates?
    Our rates can be found here.

    How can I make a payment?
    Reservations for Marine Atlantic can be done by credit card and VISA debit.

    I do not own a credit card, what are my options?

    Marine Atlantic accepts prepaid credit cards. 

    I want to change/cancel my reservation, what can I do?
    We understand plans change. If there is a change or you need to cancel your reservations please contact us at 1-800-341-7981 as soon as possible. If you change or cancel your reservation within 48 hours of your scheduled departure, a $25.00 fee will be charged.

    Do you offer any special discounts?
    Marine Atlantic offers discounted fares for seniors and children. For these rates please click here.
    Marine Atlantic offers a 10% discount off passenger fares for all group bookings of 25 or more. To make a group booking please contact us at 1-800-341-7981.
    Members who qualify for the Canadian Forces Appreciation fare are entitled to free passenger fare for them and three other companions traveling on the same reservation on the North Sydney – Port aux Basques and the Port aux Basques – North Sydney crossing and a 50% discount on the North Sydney – Argentia and Argentia – North Sydney crossing. For more information on the Canadian Forces rate please click here

    Why do I need to provide my phone number and email?
    Our objective is to let you know as early as possible if there's a schedule change or delay, so please provide us with your email address and travelling phone number at time of booking. We can't contact you if we don't have the right telephone number or email information.  All personal information collected and used is protected under the Federal Privacy Act

    Why do I need to provide my license plate? What if I take a different vehicle?
    We require you to provide your license plate to speed up the check-in process. If you take a different vehicle please notify us at 1-800-341-7981 to update your reservation.



  • Why does Marine Atlantic have a fuel surcharge? 
    Marine Atlantic, like other transportation providers, has implemented a fuel surcharge to help offset increased costs associated with fuel. 

    For anyone who has filled up their vehicle, there can be weekly price changes as a result of the cost of a barrel of oil. Marine Atlantic recognizes that our customers appreciate certainty in the total price they pay and we’ve worked hard over the last few years to keep the fuel surcharge consistent. Despite increases in our cost of fuel between 2011-2015, we made other operational adjustments so that increased fuel costs were not passed along to our customers. We have also lowered our fuel surcharge when savings are achieved. 

    How is the fuel surcharge determined?
    There are a number of factors that are taken into consideration when developing our fuel surcharge including our sailing schedule, availability of fuel suppliers, how we purchase our fuel and environmental regulations. 

    From a sailing schedule perspective, we develop our schedule and look at traditional vessel fuel usage to determine the anticipated fuel burn for the upcoming year. Given that we purchase large volumes of fuel at one time and place it in our storage tanks, we have more price certainty for a defined period of time. 

    In addition to large fuel purchases, Marine Atlantic uses a hedging program to reduce the risk of price volatility. This allows fixed prices to be negotiated in advance in an effort to provide more certainty for budgetary planning purposes. This approach also protects customers against unpredictable price swings and having to adjust the fuel surcharge multiple times per year. 

    Marine Atlantic is also preparing to meet Sulphur Emissions Control Area (SECA) environmental regulations which will result in the Corporation switching its fuel from a blend of bunker and diesel fuels to diesel fuel only by 2018. As diesel is more expensive than bunker, this change in fuel blend will likely require future fuel surcharge increases.

    While increasing fuel costs will continue to be a challenge for Marine Atlantic, we will continue our efforts to provide as much price certainty as possible and minimize what costs must be passed along to our customers.



  • Where are the terminals located? How do I get there?
    Marine Atlantic operates three terminals. For information on how to get to each terminal and their location please click on the respective terminal.
    Argentia, NL
    Port aux Basques, NL 
    North Sydney, NS

    What time should I arrive?
    Passengers with reservations must be checked-in at least two hours prior to the vessel’s scheduled sailing time. We request you do not show up more than 4 hours in advance to prevent congestion of loading and unloading the vessels

    What do I need for check-in?
    When you arrive you will need your reservation number and proper identification for all individuals on your reservation

    Is there parking available at the terminals?
    Yes, short term parking is available at all our terminals. If you require long term parking in North Sydney we recommend the use of private operators. 

    What amenities are on site?
    Our terminals are fully accessible. For more information on each terminal, please click on the respective link:

    Argentia, NL
    Port aux Basques, NL 
    North Sydney, NS


    Are there pet areas at the terminal?
    All our terminals have a designated pet area. If you take your pet out of your vehicle we require them to be leashed and muzzled at all times. For more information on our pet policy please click here.



  • What vessels does Marine Atlantic have and what amenities are onboard?
    Marine Atlantic operates four vessels. For more information on each vessel, please click on the respective vessel
    MV Atlantic Vision
    MV Blue Puttees
    MV Highlanders
    MV Leif Ericson

    What accommodations are onboard?
    Our vessels offer a variety of accommodations. We offer two and four berth cabins, adapted cabins and reserved seating. For a detailed listing of accommodations on each vessel please click here 

    When should I reserve a cabin?
    It is recommended that you reserve a cabin as soon as you make your reservation

    I didn’t reserve a cabin, can I get one onboard?

    Once you board we recommend you go to the Reception desk located on deck 7. If there are cabins available, they will make the necessary arrangements.

    What form of payment is acceptable onboard?
    Onboard our vessels we accept all major credit and debit cards and cash.

    Does Marine Atlantic offer Automated Teller Machine service?

    Marine Atlantic is pleased to offer Automated Teller Machine (ATM) service at our Port aux Basques and North Sydney terminals, and our vessels accept credit and debit cards on board throughout the crossing. The local port communities and surrounding areas in which we operate also offer a selection of ATM machines at various banks. Unfortunately, cashiers on board our vessels are not able to provide cash back due to limited cash supplies on hand.



  • Where does MAI sail? 
    To see where MAI sails, the routes and the distances, please click here.

    What is the distance of each route?

    The Port aux Basques, NL to North Sydney, NS route is 178km and the Argentia, NL to North Sydney, NS route is 520km. 



  • When will boarding begin?
    Boarding typically will begin 90-120 minutes before departure. Passengers will be notified when boarding is about to begin and will be asked to return to their vehicles at that time.

    What do I need for boarding?
    When boarding you need to provide the traffic clerk with your boarding pass. We recommend that you keep your boarding pass on you at all times.

    I need to park in an accessible area; do your vessels provide accessible parking?
    Yes, our vessels have accessible parking. Once you check in, please notify the ticket clerk.

    In which sequence will I board?
    Boarding will be done according to the daily traffic plan and is specific to each crossing. We cannot guarantee priority with loading or unloading due to load demands and operational procedures

    Once boarded, what should I take with me?
    Once boarded, it is advised that you take all belongings you may require during the crossing. Due to safety concerns, you are not allowed to visit the vehicle deck during the crossing.

    I’m a foot passenger, when will I board?
    Foot passengers will be boarded via shuttle bus. An announcement will be made at the terminal when and where you should meet the shuttle bus driver.

    How do I know where I parked?
    A Marine Atlantic employee will greet you when you exit the vehicle deck.  This is a good time for you to inquire which deck you are on.  Also, each deck is clearly marked.  We advise that you record the deck you parked your vehicle.



  • Can I travel with my pet?
    Yes, pets are allowed to travel with Marine Atlantic

    Can I take my pet onboard?
    If you are travelling with your pet you must either leave them in your vehicle or book a kennel space for them. Passengers who book a kennel space are responsible for providing an airline approved carrier for their pet. Pets are not allowed in cabins or public areas of the vessel. For more information on our pet policy, please click here



  • I have an allergy, what do I do?

    For those with allergy concerns, we ask for your assistance in alerting us. When making a reservation, please inform the reservations clerk of the condition so that they can make the necessary arrangements. Passengers should carry their own allergy medication.

    As our vessels are open to the public, we cannot guarantee an allergen-free environment. Passengers may carry their own food items that may cause allergic reactions in others. Marine Atlantic also serves and offers for sale products containing various ingredients that may be allergens for some passengers. Peanut products are not sold in our vending machines.

    Animals also travel regularly on our service. Trained service animals have access to all areas of our vessels and terminal facilities. All other animals must be muzzled and leashed when not in passenger vehicles or pet carriers.



  • Are Marine Atlantic terminals accessible?
    Yes, all our terminals are fully accessible. 

    Does Marine Atlantic have adapted cabins onboard?
    Yes, each vessel has an allocation of mobility and visually adapted cabins. If you require an adapted cabin, please contact reservations at 1-800-341-7981

    Does Marine Atlantic offer an attendant rate?
    Yes, Marine Atlantic provides free fare for attendants with proper documentation. When making your reservation, please notify us that you require an attendant. 
    For further information on our accessibility policies, please click here.



  • How do I know when I arrive?
    Towards the end of the crossing, an announcement will be made updating you of the vessel’s proximity to the destination port.

    When can I go to my vehicle?
    When disembarkation is about to commence, an announcement will be made directing passengers to the vehicle deck. A separate announcement will be made for walk-on passengers.

    How long does it take to disembark?

    Depending on the amount of traffic onboard, offloading can range from 15 minutes to 30 minutes.



  • I want to get married onboard, who should I contact?
    Marine Atlantic would be glad to share in your special day. Please contact us at 1-800-897-2797 and we will be more than willing to make the necessary arrangements.

    Can the vessel Captain marry me? 

    No, Marine Atlantic Captains cannot perform marriages. 

    Does Marine Atlantic have a doctor onboard?
    No, Marine Atlantic does not have a Doctor on staff. On the Argentia sailings we do have trained medical staff onboard. 

    What is Marine Atlantic policy on bereavement travel? 

    In the unfortunate situation you require bereavement travel, we will ensure you are on the next sailing. Please contact us at 1-800-341-7981 to make the arrangements.

    I lost/found something, what should I do?
    Marine Atlantic is not responsible for any items lost or found. In the event an item is lost or found, we will do our best to be of assistance. Inquiries? Please contact (902) 794-5731.

    I noticed property damage to my vehicle, what do I do?
    If you notice any damage to your personal property, immediately notify a staff member before you leave Marine Atlantic property.

    Are there designated smoking areas onboard the vessels?

    Yes, Marine Atlantic has designated smoking areas onboard the vessel. These areas are located outside on deck 7.

    Can I bring a rental car onboard?

    Yes, you can bring a rental car onboard. You will have to provide the license plate number upon check-in.

    Can I send my vehicle onboard if I’m not a passenger? 
    Yes, you can send your vehicle onboard if you are not a passenger. Any individual wishing to do so would have to book as a commercial vehicle.

    What criteria is used to assign my vehicle as a commercial related vehicle?

    We invite our customers to contact us prior to traveling if there is any uncertainty regarding whether they should be assigned commercial status.    Contacting us prior to travel will help to alleviate any difficulties that may arise during the check in process.  If it is determined you are travelling for commercial purposes, there is a possibility your reservation could  be cancelled at check in.   

    Marine Atlantic uses the following  criteria to determine if a customer is travelling  for  commercial purposes. 

    1. The vehicle size and type
    2. The commodity or contents being shipped
    3. The vehicle is registered as commercial or has commercial plates/signage.
    4. If the purpose of travel is business related

    In the event of any disagreement on the purpose of travel, Terminal Management will make the final decision.




  • My trip has been delayed or cancelled due to weather, what will Marine Atlantic do?
    Unfortunately, weather can interrupt your travel plans. In the event of weather delaying or cancelling a crossing we will notify you of the change and book you on the next available sailing. During the delay we will communicate all information with you in a timely manner.

    My trip has been delayed due to mechanical reasons, what should I do?
    If your crossing has been delayed, Marine Atlantic will contact you to advise of the delay. In the event of a mechanical delay over five hours, we will provide you with a complimentary meal at the next conventional meal period. 

    My trip has been cancelled due to mechanical reasons, what should I do?
    For passenger traffic:

    In the event your scheduled crossing has been cancelled for mechanical reasons, we will notify you of this cancellation and book you on the next available crossing or provide you with a refund. If your crossing has been cancelled and you are not booked on a crossing within a thirteen hour period, we will book you on the next available crossing and provide you with a voucher for future travel. Vouchers are valid for one year and are non transferable. In the event you are not able to travel on the next available crossing, we will provide you with a complete refund. 

    For commercial traffic:

    In the event a crossing has been cancelled for mechanical reasons, we will notify you of this cancellation. If you had a premium reservation, we will refund your premium portion and book you on the next available crossing. For commercial traffic without a premium reservation, we will transfer the queue to the next available crossing.

    I’m onboard and my arrival is delayed, what will Marine Atlantic do for me?
    If you are onboard and your crossing is delayed for an extended period due to mechanical concerns, we will provide you with a light snack or complimentary meal. 

    My vessel has been changed, will I lose my reservation?
    In the event of a vessel change, we will transfer your reservation to the new vessel. Reservations will be transferred according to time of booking. If your reservation is changed, Marine Atlantic will contact you. Cabins and Reserved Seating are not guaranteed in the event of a vessel change.



  • To download a print friendly version of this document click here.

    What are the safety procedures for a motor vehicle on the vessel?
    The motor vehicle must be driven on and off the vessel. The fuel tank should not be so full that the fuel will spill on board because of an increase in volume from temperature changes. The ignition switch should be switched off and the parking brake must be applied.

    Can I carry extra fuel outside the fuel tank?
    Yes, you may carry extra fuel outside the fuel tank. Extra fuel must be stored in a CSA approved container and the maximum quantity allowed is 25 litres per vehicle. The container must be properly secured in the vehicle. 

    What are the safety procedures for a recreational vehicle/trailer on the vessel?
    The recreational vehicle (RV) must be driven on and off the vessel. If the RV carries liquefied petroleum gas or propane, you can carry a maximum of two tanks totalling no more than 65 litres. The gas must be approved for domestic use and the cylinder must be secured to the RV with the valve in the SHUT position. 

    Can we bring a portable barbeque with the recreational vehicle/trailer?
    Yes, you may carry a portable barbeque and one propane cylinder with a maximum of 65 litres with a recreational vehicle or trailer. The cylinder must be secured with the valve in the SHUT position. 

    What are the safety procedures for hauling all-terrain vehicles, motorbikes, snowmobiles or personal watercraft?
    These units may be carried in the vehicle or trailer. If using a trailer, it must be attached to the motor vehicle and driven on/off the vessel.

    Can I carry extra fuel for my all-terrain vehicle, motorbikes, snowmobiles or personal watercraft?
    Yes, you may carry extra fuel outside the fuel tank. Extra fuel must be stored in a CSA approved container and the maximum quantity allowed is 25 litres per vehicle. If you are using a trailer to haul these units, you are allowed a maximum of two 25 litre containers. These containers must be properly secured in the vehicle. 

    Why does Marine Atlantic restrict the amount of extra fuel that can be carried on board?
    These requirements are mandated by Transport Canada under the Cargo Fumigation and Tackle Regulations, Section 151.