SSA announces summer reservation openings

The SSA announced when summer reservations will open. — Rich Saltzberg

The Steamship Authority (SSA) announced in a press release that reservations are open for Headstart customers and for the summer. 

Headstart reservations will be open from today, Tuesday, Jan. 10, through Monday, Jan. 16, for travel from Thursday, May 18, through Monday, Oct. 23. Reservations can be made online or by mail. According to the release, Headstart customers need to also be in the SSA’s Excursion and Preferred programs to participate. Those in the Excursion and Preferred programs with an account ending with an even number must update their account information to continue receiving benefits. The 2023 applications for these programs, alongside more information about Headstart, are available at

Meanwhile, the release states that the general summer reservations for Martha’s Vineyard ferry riders will open online and by mail on Tuesday, Jan. 24, at 5 am for travel from May 18 through Oct. 23. Reservations submitted by mail will be processed as received beginning on this date. Up to five one-way or round-trip reservations will be accepted per mailing. 

Summer reservations can be made by phone or in person starting on Tuesday, Jan. 31, at 7:30 am. Up to five one-way or round-trip reservations can be made per call. The SSA’s reservation office can be reached at 508-477-8600.

The reservation office will have extended hours for additional customer service (e.g. assistance with login password or PIN) on the following dates: 

  • Tuesday, Jan. 24, from 5 am to 6 pm
  • Wednesday, Jan. 25, to Monday, Jan. 30, from 7 am to 6 pm


The release said the SSA will have “extra technical support onsite” in case customers need assistance. The SSA will also have a virtual waiting room to let customers see their place in line, and an approximation of when they can make a transaction. 

This year will see a few changes for the reservations, according to the release. Eligible Headstart customers may make up to 10 one-way or round-trip reservations for the summer. Up to five reservations can be made “directly into another person’s name for personal use.” Three of these five reservations can be requested “as a transferable reservation” and be given to another individual at another date. Another change is that the SSA will “clear the virtual waiting room at 5 am on each of the general openings” for summer reservations. This means customers who “join the virtual queue ahead of the opening” will not receive an advantage for being in line. The release says this was done “in response to feedback from customers in 2022.”


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