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Ferry Trips | Island Hopping

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  • Ferry Trips | Island Hopping

    How to get around the Philippine Islands by Ferry
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    Getting Ferry Tickets

    The major players in the Philippines Ferry business are 2Go and Oceanjet - the largest ferry operators in the country. There are a few other operators such as SuperCat, StarLite Ferries and Lite Ferries. However, 2Go and Oceanjet together provide the widest coverage throughout the Philippines. You can book the tickets from the docks, or even online. Please refer to the following links. We also recommend checking details on the Ports & Ferry website. This website offers you a comprehensive index of all ferry routes and schedules available from every ferry corporation in the Philippines.

    2Go Ferry Schedules
    Oceanjet Ferry
    Ports + Ferries
    Seacat Ferries
    Supercat Ferries
    Super Ferries

    Major Routings throughout the Philippines (Samples)
    Depending on your route, a passenger line ferry can be from an hour to almost 45 hours long. Bangka rides are short and extend from an hour to two hours at most in case you are planning on scuba diving at distant coral reefs and dive sites. The list below contains the most commonly used Passenger Line routes and their travel time.
    • Manila – Bacolod | 20 hours
    • Bacolod – Cebu | 4 hours
    • Manila – Cebu | 22 hours
    • Manila – Iloilo | 20 hours
    • Iloilo – Cebu | 12.5 hours
    • Manila – Cagayan de Oro | 43 hours
    • Cebu – Iloilos – Puerto Princesa | 37 hours
    • Manila – Zamboanga | 44 hours
    • Manila – Puerto Princesa | 11 hours
    • El Nido – Coron | 4 hours
    Ferry Types
    There are 4 types of ferries in the Philippines available to you. Which one you pick comes down to the distance you are traveling, the level of comfort you desire and whether you are traveling with a vehicle. These 4 include the (1) Bangka (2) ROROs (Roll On, Roll Off Ferries) (3) Fastcrafts (4) Passenger Liners.
    • Bangka
      It would be nigh impossible to complete any vacation to the Philippines without setting foot on a Bangka. These are the workhorses of the Philippines Ferry network. Bangkas are the cheapest form of ferry transport and only ply short-distance routes. Also known as pump boats, Bangkas are glorified water taxis made of traditional building materials like wood and bamboo. Don’t let this fool you into thinking that these crafts are flimsy. Bangkas are known to be very sturdy boats and can withstand rough seas to an extent.
    • RORO
      Roll On Roll Off ferries are large ferries that are especially useful if you are traveling with a vehicle. These ferries run short to medium distance routes.
    • Fastcrafts
      Thesefast, air-conditioned vessels provide transport between the larger islands of the Philippines. Faster travel and the availability of modern amenities translate to a higher ticket price for these catamarans.
    • Passenger Liners
      Passenger Liners run long-distance routes around the islands. They transport hundreds of travelers in a manner akin to airplanes. Lower Deck bunk accommodation is available in the form of economy class tickets. With a first-class ticket, you can expect an air-conditioned stateroom. Traveling in the economy is fine as long as the ships aren’t too crowded.
    Safety Issues
    Well, it is as safe as any other mode of transportation. Traveling by ferries in the Philippines is as safe as driving around your city. You are in no immediate danger, but there is always the remote possibility of a mishap. In the case of the Philippines, it was the 2013 incident where a 2Go Ferry collided with a cargo ship resulting in 115 fatalities. There have been far worse incidents in the past but they have been very few and very far between. Don’t let this dampen your spirits as island hopping in the Philippine is quite fun and unique due to the geography of the country. However, you should be vigilant about your safety. Before you enter a bangka or a RORO, make sure that there are life jackets available on board. Lax security measures used by the docks results in overcrowded bangkas. As safe as these boats are, they are not built for overcrowding. Avoid such scenarios. Also, keep a keen eye on the weather. The Philippines is notorious for its typhoons on the east coast. If the weather looks particularly rough, it might be a good idea to postpone that 5-hour trip on a passenger liner.

  • #2
    Ferry Maps and Connections
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    • #3
      Additional Information II