Advice needed: ACK Ferry at end of summer - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old August 22nd, 2017, 10:36 AM
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Dan Pollock
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Advice needed: ACK Ferry at end of summer

Hey folks, quick q/opinion for the Nantucket experts here. I'm a Vineyard guy, so for us, the standby line is a pretty safe choice, no matter what.

But I'm going to be on island from this Sunday to Wednesday, and every single return ferry is booked for weeks. I'm told the standby wait is 50-100 cars every day right now.

If I needed to get back on Tuesday night or Wednesday, do I have any prayer of making that happen? Or could I be stranded for days on end before my number hits?

And related, is there any way to scheme onto the Cargo ferry? I could bring a small sailboat on a trailer if that would qualify me?
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  #2  
Old August 22nd, 2017, 10:53 AM
109onRoute109
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Mark
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It would be a gamble at this time of year.

On the Steamship website, it lists wait lists for "right now". It says 12 cars and 7 trucks, and that they expect to get them on the next ferry. But of course you want next week, which is even busier.

The steamship automatically adds cars to freight boats from the standby list if there is room on the freight boat AND if the freight boat is not on a "fuel run" with gas and / or propane trucks.

My advice would be to look into renting a jeep for that short of a time frame. IMO, you need at least a week to justify taking a car over. And you may not even need the rental for the whole visit. There are taxis and buses over there.
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Old August 22nd, 2017, 10:55 AM
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Dan Pollock
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 109onRoute109 View Post
It would be a gamble at this time of year.

On the Steamship website, it lists wait lists for "right now". It says 12 cars and 7 trucks, and that they expect to get them on the next ferry. But of course you want next week, which is even busier.

The steamship automatically adds cars to freight boats from the standby list if there is room on the freight boat AND if the freight boat is not on a "fuel run" with gas and / or propane trucks.

My advice would be to look into renting a jeep for that short of a time frame. IMO, you need at least a week to justify taking a car over. And you may not even need the rental for the whole visit. There are taxis and buses over there.
Thanks, I didn't even realize you could see the live wait times.

Re: renting, I might just do that. Another piece of info that makes me seem a BIT less insane to be considering this: I have 3 fully paid round trip rezzies in my account for now, so part of this thinking is that even if it's only for 48 hours, the trip is basically free (or at least the money was gone long enough ago to seem free!).
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  #4  
Old August 22nd, 2017, 12:18 PM
109onRoute109
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The "free trip" does make a difference!

So, on the steamship website, you can book a trip over. Hopefully you can get a trip over that works for you. Then you need to book the first available trip back, even if it is two months out. Then you put in an electronic standby request. For the trip back, you enter in the first date and time that you are willing to leave, and the last date and time you are able to leave. If a spot opens during that time frame, you will automatically be put onto that spot. This is the list where you heard of 50 - 100 cars waiting. There is not much harm in trying though, especially since the money is spent. Hopefully you get a return trip that works for you prior to leaving for the island. Otherwise, you could cancel they whole thing.
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Old August 22nd, 2017, 04:58 PM
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Frank
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Hate to be the bearer of bad news, but you can buy a decent Discovery 1 for what it costs to rent a Jeep for one week. A two-day rental will still cost way more than a round-trip w/ car. A month ago, they were booking a truck and trailer combo into mid-September, so the small boat idea is novel, but unlikely to get you further up the queue.

NRTA has extensive and frequent public transit travel routes, right up to nearly midnight; retail taxis are relatively cost-effective; and there's always bikes to be rented. It's a much smaller place than the Vineyard, so unless you're staying way out, walking can often be quicker than getting through town thanks to traffic. If all else fails, hitchhiking actually still works.
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  #6  
Old August 22nd, 2017, 04:59 PM
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Dan Pollock
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Dagger, i know, you're right! I really only want it to take it out on the beach. What's the point of driving a small school bus around all year round if you don't maximize the opportunities to load 10 people up and take em out on the sand!
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Seafoam Green 1983 110 3 Door - sometimes SW, current ST.
Spent it's working years in France, it's mid-life crisis in The Hamptons, and now its golden years in Washington, D.C.
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  #7  
Old August 23rd, 2017, 10:02 AM
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If you want to spend the money there is a company on Ack this year that I believe rents 90's and 110's for 350$+ a night
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  #8  
Old September 3rd, 2017, 05:19 PM
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Dan Pollock
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To wrap this all up:

On Thursday before I booked a ferry over and a return for a few weeks later, then put myself on the Wednesday waitlist. It hit for Wednesday evening within about 90 min, and then I waitlisted again for the ideal 9:15 ferry and got it by Sunday. So the moral of the story is even at peak time the waitlist is a pretty sure bet a few days out.

On Sunday I even rode over next to this PRISTINE dormobile 109, fresh from a multi year rehab.
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