The MV Tachek docks at the Whaletown ferry terminal on Cortes Island. Photo by Greg Osoba.

A 1.5 million dollar fund provided to the BC Ferries corporation by the provincial government, has added internet access to 14 small terminals on the BC coast. The effort is part of an initiative aimed at increasing broadband service to more British Columbians and visitors.

BC Ferries spokesperson Deborah Marshall says the service is particularly helpful at small terminals, where reservations aren’t available and ferry users may have long wait times.

The additional 14 terminals now enjoying free wifi brings the total number being served to 21 out of 25 routes.

In 2010 the ferry corporation included onboard Wi-Fi service on major routes, but that service is no longer available. Marshall says providing Wi-Fi onshore is reliable, but as higher volumes of passengers wishing to access the service on vessels providing free Wi-Fi increased over time, connecting reliably became less and less certain.

Marshall discusses the process of meeting customers’ needs for internet access in the CKTZ News report below : 

This program was funded by a grant from the Community Radio Fund of Canada and the Government of Canada’s Local Journalism Initiative.