BC Ferries Quinitsa

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The Quinitsa class contains a single vessel owned and operated by BC Ferries. It was built in 1977 by Vancouver Shipyards in North Vancouver, BC for the BC Ministry of Transportation and Highways.

Designed for short commuter trips, Quinitsa has relatively few passenger amenities. It has one vehicle deck, with small passenger lounges on either side of the vehicle deck. The bridge is suspended over the vehicle deck.


Built 1977, Vancouver
IMO number 7710965
Status Active
Home base Fulford Harbour (peak season)
Vesuvius Bay (off peak season)
Route(s) served 6 (off-peak)

Quinitsa is the only vessel in the Quinitsa class.[1]

The 50-car Quinitsa was originally built for the Nanaimo Harbour - Gabriola Island route, as demand had grown past the capacity of the 30-car Kahloke. Demand continued to grow, and Quinitsa also became under capacity; it was replaced in 1982 by the newly built Quinsam. After its replacement, Quinitsa was loaned to BC Ferries and operated on a number of routes, including routes 4, 8, and as a summer vessel on route 5.[2]

After returning from BC Ferries in late 1983, Quinitsa was assigned to the Buckley Bay - Denman Island route, again replacing Kahloke. Quinitsa returned to the BC Ferries fleet in 1985 when all Ministry of Transportation saltwater operations were transferred to BC Ferries, but continued operating on the same route (21). In 2008, Quinitsa went through a midlife refit, receiving refurbished passenger accommodations, new engines, and an upgraded bridge. Quinitsa was replaced on route 21 in January 2016 by the cable ferry Baynes Sound Connector. This shifted Quinitsa to spare vessel duty, replacing the retiring Tenaka. During its duty as a spare vessel, it primarily served as a refit relief on routes 21 and 22. It was also stationed in Fulford Harbour during the summer of 2018, when Queen of Cumberland was taken out of service; Quinitsa's slow speed was found to be unsuitable in keeping up with the Southern Gulf Island schedules, and it was only used occasionally for dangerous cargo sailings in the Southern Gulf Islands.

After the delivery of Island Aurora freed up Quadra Queen II to become the new minor-class spare vessel, Quinitsa was moved to route 6 beginning on June 4, 2019 to replace the retiring Howe Sound Queen. The assignment of Quinitsa was not well received, as it has a lower vehicle capacity than the vessel it replaced. The larger Bowen Queen was placed on route 6 during the peak seasons (from March 30, 2020 until October 1, 2020, and again from April 1, 2021 to October 11, 2021), once again relegating Quinitsa to spare vessel duties during these times.

Engines Max speed Length Displacement Vehicle capacity Passenger capacity
1,899 hp 9.75 knots 77.59 m 1,099 tonnes 44 autos 300


  1. Quinitsa, BC Ferries, retrieved 01-22-2017.
  2. M.V. Quinitsa, www.westcoastferries.ca, retrieved 01-22-2017.