New Vancouver Island ferry service set to launch next summer

Written by Nick Blenkey
VIFC logo

VIFC says that its inaugural fleet will be two high-speed Damen catamaran vessels

A new Canadian ferry company, Vancouver Island Ferry Company (VIFC), plans to launch a foot-ferry service next summer that will link Nanaimo, on Vancouver Island, with downtown Vancouver, B.C.

VIFC says it will provide service between downtown Nanaimo and downtown Vancouver, from the Nanaimo Port Authority Terminal and the Vancouver Harbour Flight Center (at the Vancouver Convention Center).

“We’re talking comfortable and reliable sailings in around 70 minutes, a seamless booking process complete with reservable seats, and refreshments that will be just that…fresh,” says the new company. “Say goodbye to the biggest pain points of travel and be ready to be welcomed aboard with a smile.”

“Islanders and mainlanders have been asking for a modern, fast and cost-effective way to travel between the Island and Vancouver. We are so excited to be bringing forward an essential transportation service to the region and are committed to its long-term success,” said Alastair Caddick, CEO of Vancouver Island Ferry Company. “We cannot wait to welcome guests aboard in summer 2023.”

Back in Septenber 2021, the Nanaimo Port Authority (NPA) the Snuneymuxw First Nation (SFN) and Toronto-based private equity firm Conqora Capital Partners Inc. announced that they had entered into agreements for the purpose of providing a high-speed passenger ferry service to connect Nanaimo and downtown Vancouver. Under those agreements, the port authority entered into a long-term lease agreement with Conqora providing access to the Nanaimo Assembly Wharf for vessel berths, welcome terminals, parking and passenger connectivity areas.


VIFC says that its inaugural fleet will be two high-speed Damen catamaran vessels each with a capacity for over 350 passengers/

“At Damen we are excited to see this ferry service come to life, and we take pride in building and delivering two high-quality fast ferry vessels to VIFC. But we also see this as the start of a long-term relationship and will not just leave after delivery; with our Damen Service Hub based in Victoria we are just around the corner to provide VIFC with in-service support for a safe, reliable and comfortable ferry service that will connect communities,” said Damen.

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