Change is afoot for people traveling to and from Shelter Island, as the South Ferry institutes a new requirement for those purchasing discounted commuter cards and the North Ferry seeks permission to raise its ticket prices.
Both ferry companies offer discounted rates for commuters and residents of the island.
The South Ferry will not increase the prices for its commuter tickets, but as of Monday it is requiring commuters to get new photo ID cards in order to purchase weekly commuter passes on its boats.
Commuter tickets are intended for people who use the ferry to commute to work either on or off the island; they are available to residents and nonresidents at the beginning of each week. The cost on the South Ferry is $27 for five round trips and $33 for six, and passes are good through Sunday of the week they are purchased. The commuter ID cards, meant to "prevent further abuse of commuter passes," can be picked up at the ferry office and are good for one year. The company asks people to fill out a basic registration form and provide proof of employment in Suffolk County in the form of a pay stub or W2 statement.
The North Ferry, meanwhile, is asking the Suffolk County Legislature for permission to raise rates on almost all of its vehicle tickets, with commuter passes set to jump by as much as 33 percent. Rates for pedestrians, vehicle passengers, motorcyclists, and bicyclists would not change. For residents of the island, weekly commuter tickets would jump from $29 to $39 for a five-day commuter pass. The nonresident rate would increase from $36 to $46 for a five-day pass and from $42 to $52 for a six-day ticket.
For those buying regular one-way trips on the North Ferry, the car-and-driver rate would go from $12 to $14 for one-way trips and from $18 to $22 for round-trip tickets. The North Ferry also hopes to increase prices on all of its prepaid 10-ticket discount books. Nonresidents would pay $79 for a book of one-way tickets, an increase of $10, and $106 for a book of round-trip tickets, a $20 increase. Residents of Shelter Island would see a $10 increase on one-way ticket books, to $64, and a $20 increase on round-trip books, to $78.
The Suffolk County Legislature will hold a hearing on the proposed rate increase on Tuesday, May 11, at 6:30 p.m. via Zoom. People who wish to attend or speak can sign up online at scnylegislature.us/publichearing.