Tuesday, October 2, 2007

1975: end of 5-cent fare on Staten Island Ferry
1997: end of 50-cent fare

The Staten Island Ferry is a passenger ferry operated by the New York City Department of Transportation between Whitehall Street at the southernmost tip of Manhattan and St. George Ferry Terminal in Staten Island. The ride takes about 25 minutes each way.

For most of the 20th century, the ferry was famed as the biggest bargain in New York City. It charged the same five cent fare as the New York Subway but the ferry fare remained a nickel when the subway fare increased to 10 cents in 1948. In 1970, then-Mayor John V. Lindsay proposed that the fare be raised to 25 cents, pointing out that the cost for each ride was 50 cents, or ten times what the fare brought in. On August 4, 1975, the nickel fare ended and the charge became 25 cents for a round trip, the quarter being collected in one direction only.

The round trip increased to 50 cents in 1990, but then was eliminated altogether in 1997. Riders must disembark at each terminal and reenter through the terminal building for a round trip. Bicycles may also be taken on the lowest deck of the ferry without charge. In the past, ferries were equipped for vehicle transport, at a charge of $3 per automobile. Vehicles have not been allowed on the ferry since the September 11, 2001 attacks.

The ferry ride is a favorite of tourists as it provides excellent views of the Lower Manhattan skyline and the Statue of Liberty. (Info and photo from Wikipedia. Photo taken by Kmf164 on July 26, 2004.)

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