With the start of the winter sailing schedule last week, and the steady decline in ridership that comes with the off-peak season, all Casco Bay Lines customers will now be boarded in Portland, and on Peaks Island, together at the same time. Resident passholders no longer need to arrive 15 minutes early and wait outdoors in designated boarding areas.
The Peaks Island Residential Boarding Pass pilot program was created to ensure space available onboard each trip for passengers that meet the definition of a resident. To continue to provide resident passholders with this assurance, CBL crew will call resident passholders from inside the terminal to board first should there be sufficient ridership to warrant it at any point during the winter. While we will no longer be asking passholders to arrive early and wait outdoors, we do ask that they continue to carry their passes so that they are available in the unlikely event they are needed.
As current passes are valid through June 18, 2022, and we expect to resume boarding passholders first again in May, passholders should hold onto their pass for use next spring. The Board of Directors will be considering feedback related to the pilot, reporting back to the Maine Public Utilities Commission, and making a determination about the future of the program in the coming months.
Signage at the terminal and on Peaks, as well as the temporary outdoor seating area at the gate in Portland, will be removed for the time being. We anticipate most customers will wait indoors during the colder temperatures.
Assisted early boarding and wheelchairs are always available upon request for any passenger, including non-passholders, to accommodate persons with transportation disabilities.
Future updates about the program will be posted here on this page. We will continue to collect feedback on the pilot and, if you have not done so already, we encourage you to send comments to .moc.1638173629senil1638173629yaboc1638173629sac@t1638173629nemmo1638173629c1638173629
Casco Bay Lines is currently piloting a 2021 Peaks Island Residential Boarding Pass pilot program. Applications are no longer being accepted.
The $10 pass will be valid for one year beginning on June 19, 2021, with the start of the summer schedule. Passholders will be permitted to board CBL vessels providing service to and from Peaks Island ahead of customers without passes. The pass does not serve as fare for the trip, which must be purchased separately. Pass holders must arrive at the respective terminal fifteen (15) minutes prior to departure time and wait in a designated area prior to boarding.
The intent of this program is to ensure space available onboard each trip for passengers that meet the definition of a resident. The program will not arbitrarily distinguish between residents and non-residents, nor will it discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, disability, gender, religion, or sexual orientation. Regular and continuing ferry services to the general public will be maintained at all times.
Frequently Asked Questions
1) Who is eligible to purchase/use a pass?
Applications are closed for the pilot program. Residents of Peaks Island were eligible to purchase and use a pass. For the purposes of this program, a resident is defined below in our policy section and includes year-round and seasonal residents. It does not include guests, other relatives, or friends.
2) How do I use my pass?
To use your pass when departing from Portland, you must arrive at your gate, with your ticket and your pass in hand, fifteen minutes prior to the scheduled departure time and wait in a line in the designated area prior to boarding. To use your pass when departing Peaks Island, please arrive fifteen minutes prior to the scheduled departure time, with your pass in hand, and wait in a line in the designated area prior to boarding. CBL staff will then direct pass holders from this area to board first.
3) Where do I wait in line?
Signage will be in place at the gate to indicate where passholders should line up prior to boarding.
4) What should I expect while waiting to board and while boarding?
Passholders should plan to arrive fifteen minutes prior to the scheduled departure time, and should be prepared to wait for up to fifteen minutes, until staff directs you to board the boat. At that time, staff will ask to see your pass. We encourage you to dress appropriately for the weather and be prepared to be standing in line for up to fifteen minutes prior to boarding. There will not be seating or cover from the elements at the gate for passholders. Assisted early boarding and/or wheelchairs are available upon request for any passenger, including non-passholders, to accommodate persons with transportation disabilities.
5) Who can help me if I have questions or need assistance?
Any CBL staff member can assist you in identifying the designated area where you should line up before boarding. Should you have questions or feedback about the pilot program, please email moc.s1638173629enily1638173629abocs1638173629ac@ss1638173629aPlai1638173629tnedi1638173629seRsk1638173629aeP1638173629 or leave your question or comment with the ticket office staff.
6) Can I use my pass from the car ferry line?
No. The pass will only be accepted from the designated passenger boarding area at the gate.
7) How many passes will be issued?
CBL will issue no more than 1,500 total passes as part of the pilot program on a rolling basis as applications are received during an initial four-week period.
8) Can I apply online?
Yes, residents may submit their completed applications via email, mail or in-person at the terminal. All passholders will be required to pick up their passes in person at the terminal so that they may be photographed for their pass.
9) Is there a deadline for picking up my pass?
No. After your application is approved, you may pick up your pass at the terminal any time during the pilot program (through June 18, 2022).
10) How much will the pass cost?
Each pass will cost $10. Any person ages 5+ wishing to board ahead of others must have their own pass.
11) When will my pass be valid?
All passes will be valid for one year beginning on June 19, 2021.
12) Can I have my application notarized outside of Maine?
Under Maine state law, notarial acts may be performed outside of Maine so long as the notary public is authorized to act in that capacity in whatever state he/she is doing the deed. In that case, the person doing the notarization would simply strike “State of Maine” from the signature line.
13) Does my child need a pass to board with me?
All children ages 5+ will need their own pass to board from the designated Peaks Island Residential Boarding area. Children four years of age and younger do not need a pass.
14) Do I need to provide proof of residency for my child?
While we do ask that you complete one application for each passholder ages 5+, you are not required to submit proof of residency documentation for any minors under the age of 18.
15) What should I do if I forget or lose my pass?
You must have your pass in hand to board from the designated Peaks Island Residential Boarding area. If you forget your pass, you should plan to board from the general boarding queue. If you lose your pass, please send an email to moc.s1638173629enily1638173629abocs1638173629ac@ss1638173629aPlai1638173629tnedi1638173629seRsk1638173629aeP1638173629.
16) What if I already have an Annual or Monthly Frequent Rider Pass?
If the pilot program is extended, CBL staff may develop a combined Frequent Rider and Peaks Island Residential Pass. Until such time as the combined pass is available, you need to carry both passes.
17) What should I do if I move and am no longer a Peaks Island resident?
If you move during the course of the year, you must relinquish your pass immediately by delivering it to staff at the CBL ticket office.
18) Who should I contact with questions?
Please direct any questions to moc.s1638173629enily1638173629abocs1638173629ac@ss1638173629aPlai1638173629tnedi1638173629seRsk1638173629aeP1638173629.
- The definition of a resident is as follows: (a) persons domiciled on Peaks Island; (b) persons who own property on Peaks Island and pay property taxes to the City of Portland; and (c) their spouses, partners, or dependents. This includes year-round and seasonal residents (including leaseholders). It does not include guests, other relatives, or friends.
- The program will not impede the public’s right to travel nor consistently deny ferry service access to non-residents and will have, at most, a negligible or minor impact on the ability of non-residents to use its ferry services.
- The program will designate a minority percentage of a ferry’s maximum capacity to residents, set a cap on the number of passes issued, and, ensure that non-residents make up a majority of passengers on each trip to and from Peaks Island. The maximum percentage that will be designated to resident pass holders will be forty (40) percent of the respective vessel’s designated capacity. A cap of 1,500 annual passes will be issued on a first come, first served basis. Depending upon demand, this number may need to be adjusted upward.
- Pass holders must arrive at the respective terminal fifteen (15) minutes prior to departure time and wait in a designated area prior to boarding.
- Applications will be accepted throughout the year; however, given what is anticipated to be a high level of interest, a four (4) week period during the spring of 2021 will be identified for acceptance of Peaks Island Residential Boarding Pass applications.
- Applications will be accepted in person or online. Renewals may be processed either in person, via mail or electronically (this will depend upon ticketing software in use). An applicant must submit at least two (2) of the following documents: property tax bill; rental agreement; motor vehicle registration; driver’s license; hunting or fishing license; utility bill; property insurance bill; or, other evidence of Peaks Island residency that is acceptable to Casco Bay Lines.
- Once submitted, an application and documentation will be reviewed by District personnel. Provided the applicant meets the criteria (as outlined above), the pass or passes will be issued. In the event an application does not meet the criteria, the applicant will be notified in writing and an explanation for the denial provided.
- An applicant may appeal the denial of a boarding pass request by District personnel in accordance with the following procedures: An appeal must be made in writing to the District, supported by sufficient information to enable to appeal to be fairly evaluated, within 7 calendar days after the issuance of the written notice of denial. The appeal will be evaluated by the District’s General Manager. A written decision from the General Manager stating the grounds for allowing or denying the appeal will be provided to the appellant within 60 days of the filing of the appeal. The decision of the General Manager is final and no further appeal will be considered by the District or its Board of Directors.
- This policy is intended solely as an internal guide to the District. It does not afford any person any property or contractual rights, and no person shall have any enforceable rights against the District based upon this policy or alleged violations of this policy.