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Rider information

The Water Taxi’s docks, passenger waiting areas, and vessels are accessible. If you need assistance boarding the vessel, please inform a crew member.

Bikes are welcome at no additional charge. Please walk your bike between the pier entrance and the vessel. A maximum of 26 bikes are allowed on the Vashon/Downtown Seattle route and on the West Seattle/Downtown Seattle route. The back-up vessel on the West Seattle route, the MV Spirit of Kingston, holds 14 bikes. To protect the safety of our customers, starting June 24, 2019 bicycles must fit within the onboard storage area marked on the deck, and no additional bicycles will be allowed once the bicycle storage area is full. Bikes can be up to 73 inches in length and wheels up to 2.5 inches can be accommodated. Riders can use a bicycle sizing station at our facilities prior to boarding. Riders are asked to remove luggage and turn off lighting while the bicycle is stowed during a sailing. Options are available to store bicycles onshore at Vashon or riders can travel via the state ferry. Download our bicycle policy for more information or read our blogpost, and contact our staff with any questions you have.

We regret that we cannot allow gasoline-powered bikes or scooters aboard the Water Taxi. Bicycles powered by batteries, electricity, and people are welcome.

The Water Taxi will not operate on the following holidays:

  • Veterans Day (observed), Monday, Nov. 12, 2018
  • Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, Nov. 22, 2018
  • Day after Thanksgiving, Friday, Nov. 23, 2018
  • Christmas Day, Tuesday, Dec. 25, 2018
  • New Year’s Day, Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2019

The Vashon route will not operate on:

  • Memorial Day, Monday, May 27, 2019
  • Independence Day, Thursday, July 4, 2019
  • Labor Day, Monday, Sept. 2, 2019

The West Seattle route will be on Sunday schedule on:

  • Memorial Day, Monday, May 27, 2019
  • Independence Day, Thursday, July 4, 2019
  • Labor Day, Monday, Sept. 2, 2019

If you have lost an item, please check with the crew within 24 hours. If more than 24 hours have elapsed, please fill out the Metro Transit Lost and Found form. Items will be held for 14 days. If you have found an item, please inform a crew member.

The King County Water Taxi is not responsible for lost or stolen items.

You may pay your fare with a PugetPass, ORCA card, or cash. As you board, show your PugetPass, tap your ORCA card on the card reader held by a crew member, or put the exact cash fare in the fare box.

  • We cannot make change for those paying with cash.
  • There are ticket vending machines at all terminals that accept debit and credit cards.
  • No credit cards or checks are accepted at the vessels.
  • There is an ATM at the Colman Ferry Dock, south of our terminal at Pier 52 in downtown Seattle.

Group tickets

For information about purchasing group tickets, please see our group ticket application form.


ORCA is an electronic fare card used by seven Puget Sound-area transit agencies (King County Metro Transit, Kitsap Transit, Community Transit, Pierce Transit, Everett Transit, and Sound Transit) and Washington State Ferries. Learn more 

How to purchase and load value onto an ORCA card:

If your ORCA card is loaded with an E-purse, your fare will be deducted from the transportation value in your E-purse. If you have a regional pass, the reader will recognize the trip value on your pass as fare payment.

If the trip value on your pass is less than the Water Taxi fare, you may pay the balance in cash. Example: the one-way ORCA fare to or from West Seattle is $4.00. If the transit pass on your ORCA card has a trip value of $2.25, you can use your ORCA card to pay part of the fare and pay the rest ($1.75) in cash.

ORCA LIFT reduced fare

The King County Water Taxi is now offering a reduced fare for passengers who have ORCA LIFT cards.

The ORCA LIFT fare is $3.00 per one-way trip on the West Seattle route and $3.75 per one-way trip on the Vashon Island route.

The ORCA LIFT card is available to anyone whose household income is at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty level—about $23,340 annually for an individual living alone.

Learn more about the ORCA LIFT program and how to enroll at

Regional Reduced Fare Permit

Seniors (65 and older) and persons with disabilities may ride the King County Water Taxi at a reduced rate with a valid Regional Reduced Fare Permit (RRFP).

One personal care attendant may ride for free with this permit, but must board and leave with the reduced-fare passenger. In addition, the reduced-fare passenger must have an RRFP with “PCA” indicated.

Learn more about the RRFP, including eligibility requirements, on the Metro Transit website.

Pets are not allowed on the Water Taxi. Service animals are allowed; no additional fare is required.

The Water Taxi does not take reservations. Passengers board on a first-come, first-served basis.

Service advisories

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