Staten Island Ferry

Parking at St. George Ferry Terminal

In addition to privately operated lots, there are two DOT Municipal parking lots at St. George Ferry Terminal. Parking is $5.50 per day or $5.00 per day with Muni-Meter Parking Card or $300 per quarter.

Once you pay at the Muni-Meter, you have to schlep back to your car to display the receipt on your windshield.

Waiting in the Terminals

Though elevators are available at both Whitehall and St. George terminals, passengers using wheelchairs are encouraged to use lower-level boarding. This means waiting in the bicycle waiting area.

Bomb-sniffing dogs will screen bags and bicycles, though their handlers generally steer them clear of people in wheelchairs and those with service dogs.

Boarding the Staten Island Ferry

The Staten Island Ferry features state-of-the-art magnetic locks at each dock, so the deck will be (reasonably) level with the dock ramp.  There may be a bump, but it will be passable by motorized wheelchairs.

About the Fleet

Three of the newer boats have ADA-compliant elevators to take you to any passenger deck, including the observation deck up top.  Try not to use the elevators during boarding and disembarking, though; there may be a long wait.

Amenities for Blind Travelers

As recently as 2008, a $300,000 talking kiosk for the blind with information about New York City attractions and tactile maps was installed in Whitehall Terminal.  It was to chirp like a bird to alert blind people to its presence.  Unfortunately, I’ve never seen nor heard this fabled kiosk in all my ferry trips.  I suspect it broke down and there was no money in the budget to have it fixed.

Fun fact: did you know there’s a cocktail named after the Staten Island Ferry?  It consists of equal parts Malibu Rum and pineapple juice served over ice in a highball glass.  In flavor it resembles a Piña Colada  but does not require coconut cream, and thus is more easily mixed in bars that lack the specialty ingredients and blender that a Piña Colada would require.  Now you can’t get a Staten Island Ferry on the Staten Island Ferry… but you can purchase beer from the concession stand.

If you need further information on the Staten Island Ferry, you can contact Desiree Mercado at dmercado@dot.nyc.gov… or leave a comment here and maybe we can help with your accessibility question!

2 Responses

  1. Dayanthi Sandrasagra May 19, 2017 at 3:33 pm #

    Would there be much walking at the terminals in South Ferry and Staten Island?
    Is the ferry ride recommended for persons using walkers?

  2. Accessible NYC June 2, 2017 at 12:30 am #

    I would recommend it if you’re able to negotiate some bumps in the road, like the junction where the ferry meets land and the metal grating embedded in the walkway. The terminal on the Staten Island side is relatively small, as New York City transportation hubs go, and though the South Ferry terminal on the Manhattan side is larger, there are places to sit down. Both terminals have elevators.

    I hope that provides enough information for you to make a decision as to whether the Staten Island Ferry is doable for you. Please let me know if there’s anything else I can do.

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