Wouldn’t it be great if you could get a text to let you know the ferry was running late or had some other service issue? Now you can. The San Francisco Bay Area Water Emergency Transportation Authority (WETA), the agency that provides SF Ferry service, just launched real-time text message and email service alerts to help improve passenger communications when service disruptions strike.
Ferry riders can subscribe at sfbf.mobi/bayalerts to receive text message and email alerts for specific San Francisco Bay Ferry routes, days of the week, and times of day. This ensures that passengers will only be notified of service disruptions when it is relevant to them.
“San Francisco Bay Ferry is very reliable, but we know that when issues do arise, clear and quick communication to our passengers is the most critical task,” said Seamus Murphy, WETA’s Executive Director. “This new feature provides targeted, relevant alerts right to passengers’ phones, so they know exactly what’s going on.”
WETA developed this new tool in partnership with SimplifyTransit, which focuses on passenger-centric transit communication tools. The automated SimplifyTransit platform pulls in real-time alerts published in WETA’s real-time transit information system and distributes those alerts to subscribers via text and email.
“We’re excited to help San Francisco Bay Ferry offer its riders detailed, helpful, targeted and timely real-time information when their trip doesn’t go as planned,” said SimplifyTransit CEO Cody Kraatz.
Real-time alerts continue to be available via the SF Bay Ferry app. WETA is currently implementing real-time information at electronic terminal displays throughout the ferry system as well. Real-time information is currently available on displays at the Alameda Seaplane Lagoon Ferry Terminal and the Downtown San Francisco Ferry Terminal.
The ferry system recently released its 2023 year-to-date reliability and on-time performance data, which shows that between January and July 2023, SF Ferry completed 99% of its scheduled trips, and 97% of its trips arrived at their destinations within five minutes of the scheduled time. But delays and unforeseen disruptions do occur from time to time, and the new text and email alert system will keep passengers informed in real time.