Council adopted the Snug Cove Medical Assured Loading Policy in 2024.

Medical Assured Loading is available for eligible patients who need to travel to or from critical medical appointments. It is designed to reduce wait time for those in need of critical care.

Eligible patients

To be eligible for Medical Assured Loading, patients must:

  • Be travelling to a health-related appointment; and
  • Their Medical Practitioner has determined that an extended wait in the ferry lineup could cause a health concern.

Medical Assured Loading is not available for general doctor, dentist, or specialist appointments or other pre-booked medical procedures for which an extended wait in the Snug Cove ferry lineup will not cause a health concern.

Information for patients

Bring your MAL letter to Bowen Island Municipality at least one business day in advance of travel.  If eligible, you will be issued numbered and dated Snug Cove MAL Vehicle Cards to display in the front and rear windows of your vehicle.

There is a special permit area for Snug Cove MAL passengers in the cross-hatched ferry line up lane in front of the General Store. Only vehicles displaying valid Snug Cove MAL Vehicle Cards, or vehicles used by authorized health care professionals, may park in this area while waiting to board the ferry.

Arrive at least 15 minutes in advance of the scheduled sailing’s departure time.

Information for medical practitioners

Medical practitioners can issue a MAL letter for patients for whom an extended wait in the Snug Cove ferry lineup for a ferry sailing could cause a health concern.  See patient eligibility section above.

While BIM’s Snug Cove MAL program is unrelated to BC Ferries’ MAL program or the provincial Travel Assistance Program (TAP) and is administered separately, we have mirrored BC Ferries’ MAL letter requirements so that a single letter may be used for both programs.

Once complete, medical practitioners will provide the letter directly to the patient.

MAL letters must include the following information:

  • Medical practitioner’s letterhead, including office address and contact information
  • Date of issue
  • Patient’s name (for minors, please also include the name of the parent or legal guardian)
  • A statement reading: “This patient requires Medical Assured Loading on the next available sailing as it is necessary for them to avoid a wait at the terminal.” Information regarding the patient’s condition or health is not required.
  • Date/s of travel or an expiry date.  Maximum duration one year.
  • Medical practitioner’s signature

BC Ferries Medical Assured Loading in Horseshoe Bay

Medical Assured Loading (MAL) is only available for those travelling under the Travel Assistance Program (TAP) and who have a MAL letter from their medical practitioner that states that it is necessary for them to avoid a wait at the ferry terminal.

Arrive at least 30 minutes before departure, and present your MAL letter and completed TAP form to the ticket booth agent. If there is an overload and you have a MAL letter, inform an employee and they will direct you to the appropriate tollbooth. When travelling home through Horseshoe Bay, the patient must have a completed Travel Assistance Program (TAP) form.

Read more about BC Ferries Medical Assured Loading on the Horseshoe Bay side.