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No Tokens and only One Day Passes to be Sold at Dockyard in 2016


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I've gone on the Breakaway twice, and both times the lines for the ferries and buses were much longer and for the ferries formed much earlier than they used to. I also saw people getting left behind at the St. George's ferry terminal because the number of waiting passengers was greater than the ferry's capacity. I never saw anything like that happen in the past. Last year they started limiting the number of cruise ship passengers boarding the local #7 bus at Dockyard to leave space for the Bermudians who take the bus. That put an additional load on the #7 express "specials" to Horseshoe Bay.

 

 

This mornings article indicates the bus lines were very long. My reading is that they were not running extra buses like in the past. I never waited more than ten minutes last year.

 

http://www.royalgazette.com/news/article/20160428/tourists-upbeat-despite-bus-queues

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This mornings article indicates the bus lines were very long. My reading is that they were not running extra buses like in the past. I never waited more than ten minutes last year.

 

http://www.royalgazette.com/news/article/20160428/tourists-upbeat-despite-bus-queues

 

 

Interesting, however, I did not see anything regarding taxi service.

 

Wondering if the taxis were able to meet the demand.

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Interesting, however, I did not see anything regarding taxi service.

 

 

 

Wondering if the taxis were able to meet the demand.

 

 

 

Hopefully report backs from those who cruised on Breakaway and on Summit this week will start coming in. I am glad my sailing is six weeks away. Much more should be known by then.

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Hopefully report backs from those who cruised on Breakaway and on Summit this week will start coming in. I am glad my sailing is six weeks away. Much more should be known by then.

 

I'm sailing on the 8/28 Summit sailing.My final payment is due by 6/14.If the transportation problem is not resolved by then.I will probably CXL.This would have been my 16th trip to Bermuda.

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It looks like the ruckus we created has led to a change in policy. Tokens and two day passes are being sold at the Dockyard VICs:

 

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showpost.php?p=49846764&postcount=1

 

However this doesn't mean they're going to be making extra #7 buses available the way they did in the past, per this article:

 

http://www.royalgazette.com/news/article/20160428/morning-rain-doesnt-dampen-tourists-fun

 

"A spokesman for the Ministry of Transport confirmed that no additional buses had been provided to cope with the influx of cruise ship passengers."

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It looks like the ruckus we created has led to a change in policy. Tokens and two day passes are being sold at the Dockyard VICs:

 

 

 

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showpost.php?p=49846764&postcount=1

 

 

 

However this doesn't mean they're going to be making extra #7 buses available the way they did in the past, per this article:

 

 

 

http://www.royalgazette.com/news/article/20160428/morning-rain-doesnt-dampen-tourists-fun

 

 

 

"A spokesman for the Ministry of Transport confirmed that no additional buses had been provided to cope with the influx of cruise ship passengers."

 

 

 

The spin in the last couple of articles is something else. Passengers are upbeat waiting 45 minutes. Fun in the heavy rain. Taking a $20 taxi ride to Horseshoe Bay was enjoyable......I wonder how it was only $20???

 

I think they will have to give in and use the extra buses. The cruise lines are going to get feedback from unhappy passengers who had to wait in those lines.

Edited by Charles4515
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We were in Bermuda this week. We just missed the 930 ferry as we were a large group. We got tokens from the visitor info centre. Another person in our party who made the party paid with a 5.00 bill. We ended up taking the ferry to hamilton instead and from there we took a bus to the crystal caves and from there it was a short cab ride to St. George.

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Just back from the Summit

We were there Wed & Thursday.

Left Thursday at 5 PM as there was a storm coming in.

Yes - the 3 day pass is gone as not many people were getting it.

the 2 day pass is available for the 2016 season.

.

Part of the reason given is that people had made there plans and were not aware of the change. ( read that as you want, I read it to mean they may try again in 2017).

.

Finally, if taking the ferry, get there 30 min ahead of time. each Ferry I was on had long lines with people getting left behind.

.

Enjoy the 2016 season everyone.

We did good and are the "unsong heros".

.

Signing Off.

CGin MTL

ps - Charlie - hope to sail with you some day, as we often had the same thoughts.

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  • 3 weeks later...
Does this mean that we won't be able to buy tokens at the information centers? We are leaving Sunday, should I go to the bank and buy quarters? HELP!!!l

 

The changes to the transportation policy discussed in this thread were revoked. Tokens and passes are available at the VICs. No roll of quarters are needed.

 

 

SBtS

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. . . I doubt you're going to be able to change bills for quarters either. You couldn't easily do it in the past so don't expect to now.

 

 

 

We sail to Bermuda in July. So, I have followed this thread with interest.

 

As an FYI, there is a machine that gives quarters in the casino on the Grandeur of the Seas. Will accept $1-$20 bills. There is a quarter machine in which you drop quarters in the casino.[pushes coins] you hope they drop. :rolleyes:

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We sail to Bermuda in July. So, I have followed this thread with interest.

 

As an FYI, there is a machine that gives quarters in the casino on the Grandeur of the Seas. Will accept $1-$20 bills. There is a quarter machine in which you drop quarters in the casino.[pushes coins] you hope they drop. :rolleyes:

 

 

There is no need for quarters for public transportation since the changes instituted at the start of the season were quickly revoked after the tourist outcry.

 

 

SBtS

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  • 1 month later...

I realize this thread has been quiet for some time and most of the information regarding the current transit situation at the Dockyard has been fully reported. But I just returned today from a 7 night Bermuda cruise on Summit with three full days in port and wanted to add an update based on our experience.

 

The 1 and 2-day passes were available at the original kiosks at the pier for $19 pp for the 1-day and 31.50 pp for the 2-day. We were very fortunate as for the first two days in port we were the only ship so there was only 2,100 cruise passengers there during that time. NCL Breakaway, which had been on a charter schedule, arrived on day 3 and it was then quite crowded.

 

There were many shuttle vans available as well as many taxis and the vans were providing transportation to and from Horseshoe Bay beach at $7 pp one way. There were also plenty of both the vans and taxis available at the beach. However there did not seem to be any additional local buses added and no Express buses at all.

 

Also disappointing was the "up the hill" van at Horseshoe Bay was no longer there reportedly being put out of business by the vans and cabs. This meant a long walk up the hill to the bus stops if that was your selected mode of transit.

 

We bought the 2-day pass as our plans for the first two days made it far more economic to use the buses and ferries v the vans or taxis. As such we elected to take the local bus to Horseshoe on day 1. The wait was only about 15 minutes and the bus was able to accommodate all of those waiting to take it. It of course was about a 10 minute longer ride as it stopped locally along the way.

 

The most notable situation, however, is that it was filled mainly with cruise passengers so many locals either were forced to stand or elected to wait for another bus. So if as reported one of the goals in all this was to provide better access for the locals, this has completely backfired as by eliminating the Express bus, it has forced those cruise passengers with passes to use the local bus crowding out the locals.

 

However once out of the Dockyard, the bus transit around the island was fine and a mix of locals and tourists. The ferries were also very good and on the Harbor Night additional ferries were added. When Breakaway arrived the crowds were very large and longer lines existed and IMO the lack of the Express bus to Horseshoe was a contributor to this as many vans were needed to take the loads.

 

IMO, hopefully they will revert to the original method and add back the Express with a balance of vans and taxis. That to me at least would make a lot more sense in handling the passengers and lessen the loads on the local buses.

Edited by leaveitallbehind
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The most notable situation, however, is that it was filled mainly with cruise passengers so many locals either were forced to stand or elected to wait for another bus. So if as reported one of the goals in all this was to provide better access for the locals, this has completely backfired as by eliminating the Express bus, it has forced those cruise passengers with passes to use the local bus crowding out the locals.

 

However once out of the Dockyard, the bus transit around the island was fine and a mix of locals and tourists. The ferries were also very good and on the Harbor Night additional ferries were added. When Breakaway arrived the crowds were very large and longer lines existed and IMO the lack of the Express bus to Horseshoe was a contributor to this as many vans were needed to take the loads.

 

IMO, hopefully they will revert to the original method and add back the Express with a balance of vans and taxis. That to me at least would make a lot more sense in handling the passengers and lessen the loads on the local buses.

 

Try and imagine what the buses are like when there are 7000 passengers when Breakaway and Summit are docked the same days, without those "Special" express buses to the beach.

 

I think that if passengers are only going to Horseshoe, St. George or Hamilton that getting transportation passes no longer makes sense. A couple of weeks ago I bought tokens for all my ferry rides and used the $7 shuttles to the beach. I skipped the the two day pass for $31.50 which is what I used to buy. For my first 2 days tokens and Horseshoe shuttle van cost me $23. If we had decided to go to Harbour Nights it would have been two more tokens, $32 total. Plus the Horseshoe Shuttle goes down and up the hill. They don't sell three day passes anymore, so the third day going to Horseshoe took the $7 shuttle again. It doesn't make sense to use the public buses if you are only going to Horseshoe, Hamilton and St. George.

 

If you are hopping on and off, doing the Caves, BAMZ, Elbow, Gibbs Lighthouse etc. then the public buses pass can make sense.

Edited by Charles4515
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How many tokens for St George's Ferry?

How many tokens for return ferry to Dock Yard?

How many tokens for bus to STG from Hamilton depot?

How many tokens for bus back from STG to Hamilton depot?

How many tokens for ferry to and from Hamilton?

How many tokens for bus to and from Hamilton?

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How many tokens for St George's Ferry?

How many tokens for return ferry to Dock Yard?

How many tokens for bus to STG from Hamilton depot?

How many tokens for bus back from STG to Hamilton depot?

How many tokens for ferry to and from Hamilton?

How many tokens for bus to and from Hamilton?

 

Each and every one way ride requires one token per person. There are certain instances where you can get a free transfer from one bus route to another, but that's not applicable to any of the trips you listed.

 

It looks like you have eight one way trips listed, so eight tokens per person would be required.

Edited by njhorseman
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Try and imagine what the buses are like when there are 7000 passengers when Breakaway and Summit are docked the same days, without those "Special" express buses to the beach.

 

I think that if passengers are only going to Horseshoe, St. George or Hamilton that getting transportation passes no longer makes sense. A couple of weeks ago I bought tokens for all my ferry rides and used the $7 shuttles to the beach. I skipped the the two day pass for $31.50 which is what I used to buy. For my first 2 days tokens and Horseshoe shuttle van cost me $23. If we had decided to go to Harbour Nights it would have been two more tokens, $32 total. Plus the Horseshoe Shuttle goes down and up the hill. They don't sell three day passes anymore, so the third day going to Horseshoe took the $7 shuttle again. It doesn't make sense to use the public buses if you are only going to Horseshoe, Hamilton and St. George.

 

If you are hopping on and off, doing the Caves, BAMZ, Elbow, Gibbs Lighthouse etc. then the public buses pass can make sense.

 

I understand and that was my point exactly. Without the Express buses to help with the volume of passengers heading to Horseshoe, the lines for the the vans are long when two ships are in port. This has also put an increased load on the local buses. At least on Wednesdays with Harbor Nights they add extra evening ferry service to and from Hamilton.

 

We have cruised to Bermuda five times and in prior years we have been there with two ships in port and have not experienced the congestion that is now the situation resulting from the changes in the transit system. IMO, it was far better in prior years with the addition of the Express buses that ran continuously between Horseshoe Bay beach and the Dockyard.

 

I think the plan to try to increase the van and taxi utilization and resulting revenue has negatively impacted the very customers who bring the revenue to the island during the cruise season in the first place. Longer lines, potentially increased cost, and less ease and flexibility do not serve the customers well. At least they have reinstated the 2-day passes for those who choose to utilize them.

 

I was not debating the merits of the passes v tokens as that is a personal choice based on what plans you have to visit the different places on the island. However in our case using both the ferry and bus system rather extensively over the first two days it was the preferred choice for us.

Edited by leaveitallbehind
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I was not debating the merits of the passes v tokens as that is a personal choice based on what plans you have to visit the different places on the island. However in our case using both the ferry and bus system rather extensively over the first two days it was the preferred choice for us.

 

That is my point. The transportation pass only makes sense now if you use the bus and ferry system extensively. It does not make sense if you are only going to Horseshoe or only taking ferry's to either Hamilton or St. George. Or Horseshoe one day and ferries the other day to either Hamilton or St. Goerge's. And with the To the Top no longer running people up the hill, that is another reason to take a minibus shuttle to Horseshoe, and not a public bus. I am raising that because I talked to a number of fellow passnegers who bought the transportation passes who were not using the bus and ferry system extensively. Some because that is what they did on previous trips. But with the changes they might want to reconsider the passes.

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I understand and that was my point exactly. Without the Express buses to help with the volume of passengers heading to Horseshoe, the lines for the the vans are long when two ships are in port. This has also put an increased load on the local buses. At least on Wednesdays with Harbor Nights they add extra evening ferry service to and from Hamilton.

 

 

No lines for the shuttle vans with two ships are in port. You pretty much walk up to a van and take a seat.

 

The problem with eliminating the "Special" express buses is that it assumes that people only use the buses from the Dockyard to go to Horseshoe. What they should do is add those extra buses back on but not run them Express. That would better serve the local users and tourists.

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We've been to Bermuda 4 times (2014 and 2015 on the NCL Breakaway, most recently). My parents just returned from the NCL Breakaway. They have been to Bermuda 7 or 8 years in a row now on NCL cruises.

 

I think Bermuda has reached a point where they are struggling with the influx of massive numbers of cruise passengers and need to balance the tourism with the quality of life for local residents.

 

On this trip, my parents said that one of the bus drivers was fairly hostile towards cruise passengers, even making a tourist (kid) give up their seat for a local rider.

 

I'm not quite sure though why they would eliminate the Horseshoe specials, as this just means the local will be crowded and this is to the detriment of the daily commuters.

 

It also seems like there are more and more cars on the island now and fewer mopeds. Eliminating buses and making people more reliant on cab transportation will only add to the congestion.

 

I wonder if demand for the 3 day pass was reduced when the NCL Breakaway moved up its departure time by a couple of hours last year and that is why they were eliminated, or if they just thought that by selling only two day passes, more people will stay in the dockyard area on their 3rd port day thereby reducing congestion and strain on the rest of the island.

 

I also wonder if they are trying to figure things out in advance of next year's America's Cup sailings, which will be bringing even more people to the island in late May through June of 2017.

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.....

 

On this trip, my parents said that one of the bus drivers was fairly hostile towards cruise passengers, even making a tourist (kid) give up their seat for a local rider.

 

 

If you are at King's Wharf, I suggest you just take one of the shuttle buses to Horseshoe Bay. $7 per person.

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