Arriving and Boarding the Ferry
Do I need to make a reservation?
For now, due to COVID-19, reservations are required. Book online, or call us at 800.643.3779.
Under normal circumstances, reservations are strongly recommended to guarantee a place on your desired departure. This is especially important during busy times and high traffic periods (summer months, weekends, holidays).
What happens if I just show up?
**Due to COVID-19, reservations are currently required.**
Under normal circumstances, we'll do our best to accommodate you; if space is available, we'll get you on the next departure. However, please know that space is not always available, and the larger your vehicle, the harder it is for us to accommodate on the spot. If the immediate departure is sold out, we will book you on the next available crossing and put you on stand-by for any departures prior to that, in the event a reserved guest does not show up and space opens up.
What if I hit traffic/can't make it/know I'm going to be late?
Give us a call at 800.643.3779. Your tickets are valid for two years from the date of purchase, so if you're going to be late we can move your reservation to the next available departure.
When should I arrive at the terminal?
We recommend arriving 45 minutes to one hour prior to your scheduled departure time. This allows for plenty of time for vehicles to get checked-in at the toll booth, and for foot passengers to check-in with the ticket counter inside the terminals.
What is there to do once I get there?
You're welcome to get out, stretch your legs and take a walk around at either terminal. There's plenty of grass to walk pets, and there are great views of the Delaware Bay from both sides.
- In the Lewes terminal, both the Lewes Coffee Company and Grain On the Rocks are open seven days a week, year-round.
- In Cape May, the terminal is open and restrooms are available.
At What Age Can an Unaccompanied Minor Ride the Ferry?Unaccompanied minors who are 14 years or older may travel aboard the Ferry without an escort. A maximum of two children between the ages of 2 and 13 can travel escorted by a passenger who is at least 14 years old.
Is Parking Available at the Terminals?
Yes, parking is available (free of charge) at both the Cape May and Lewes terminals.
- To access the terminal parking lot in Cape May, stay to the far right hand lane as you enter the terminal grounds and follow the signs for Foot Passenger parking. You'll stay to the right of the toll booth (do not go through the toll booth if you are looking to access the parking lot), and follow the lane up to the terminal, where ample parking is available.
- To access the terminal parking lot in Lewes, utilize the second entrance on Cape Henlopen Drive. Please note, this is not the toll booth entrance; this entrance is marked with a blue sign that says, "Foot Passenger Parking Lot."
Can I leave my car in the ferry parking lot overnight?
Yes, we just ask that you register your license plate number with the folks at the Ticket Counter in the terminal, or with the police after hours in the police building in either Cape May or Lewes. There is no charge for this service, all parking at the Ferry terminals is free.
Can you describe the foot passenger boarding process?
Announcements will be made that will instruct foot passengers to proceed to the 2nd level of the terminal to proceed through the security checkpoint to prepare for boarding the vessel. Passengers can either take the stairs or an elevator to get to the Skywalks for boarding. Prior to announcements, take time to visit our restrooms, food court and gift shop. There are also restrooms, gift shop and a food court on each ferry. Upon boarding the vessel you will be required to present your ticket for scanning by our Dock Attendant.
How far is the walk from the terminal elevator to the vessel gangway?
In Cape May, once you exit the lobby elevator on the second floor, it is approximately 465 feet to the vessel gangway. In Lewes, the distance is slightly less, approximately 325 feet. In both cases, the surfaces are mostly level or with gradual declines/inclines. The vessel gangway has a more distinct pitch, and the vessel crew will be there to assist you.
How about the boarding process for vehicles?
Approximately 20 minutes prior to your departure, boarding announcements both outside and inside will instruct drivers and vehicle passengers to return to vehicles to prepare for boarding the vessel. Once you return to your vehicle, you will be required to present your ticket for scanning by security personnel prior to boarding the vessel. Dock attendants will help direct you to driving on and parking on the ferry. Once parked on the car deck of the vessel, there are 24 stairs to climb to get to the first passenger deck. If you cannot take the stairs and wish to sit on either passenger deck, please advise either toll booth or security personnel before driving on to the vessel. You will be issued a separate boarding pass and be directed to board via the terminal and a staff person will assist by driving your vehicle both on and then off the vessel on the other side, where you will be reunited with your vehicle.
What type of seating is available on the ferries?
There are several different types of seats on the ferries. Indoors, there are both tables with bench seating, and individual reclining seats. Outdoors, you have a choice of individual Adirondack type seating, Lido Bar seating on the upper desk, metal chair and table seating on the upper deck, and wooden bench seating on the second deck.
** During COVID-19, Indoor seating has been limited to comply with social distancing guidelines. Walk-on passengers are guaranteed indoor seating; vehicle passengers may occupy any remaining indoor seating on a first-come, first-served basis. **