Miller Ferry – Put-in-Bay’s Ferry Transportation Provider
The Miller Ferry boat service offers transport to South Bass and Middle Bass Island from their Port Clinton, Ohio dock. This ferry can accommodate vehicles, passengers, trailers and more. Much of the supplies that keep our small island running are hauled by the Miller Ferry. In the winter, the essential items such as mail and milk come by airplane to our beloved South Bass Island.
The ferry boat service generally runs from late March or Early April until December or January. Ice formation and the weather dictates how long they can operate and when they open for the season. Almost every Put-in-Bay resort, hotel, condo, and home rental annually opens and closes on the same schedule.
Once at the Lime Kiln Dock on Put-In-Bay, guests can step off the ferry and walk directly to a golf cart rental location. Here, guests can rent a golf cart to see the island. See the view from different sides of the island and take in the quaint island charm. You can even see the brand new Put-in-Bay Condos right on the water near the ferry dock as you get close to the island.
More Miller Boat Line Info
Throughout the season, there are many great Put-In-Bay Events and Festivals. Fortunately, the Miller Ferry is ready to be your link to the Lake Erie Islands. At peak times the ferry boat is running every half hour. So, guests have ample opportunity to come and go as they please. Additionally, the Miller Ferry service has a reasonable fare, making it easier to afford for the whole family.
Guests wishing to bring their car or vehicle over the great lakes can do so with the Miller Boat Line. However, we suggest leaving your car on the mainland unless you must take a car over. Parking on Put-in-Bay is very limited for cars and other larger vehicles. If you are worried about parking on the mainland you are wasting your own time because the Miller Ferry company offers FREE PARKING!
Check out their website for the new 2020 Put-in-Bay Ferry Schedule and updates on the newest addition to the Miller Ferry Fleet!
Miller Ferry Fleet
Motor Vessel Mary Ann Market
The Miller Ferry added a new ferry to its fleet! The Mary Ann Market is the newest passenger and vehicle ferry added to the fleet and is expected to complete its construction in 2020. The Mary Ann Market features brand-new state-of-the-art boating technology. In addition, the new ferry has the capacity to carry 600 passengers at once.
Motor Vessel Put-in-Bay Extension
The Put-in-Bay Extension is the 2nd newest ferry among the Miller Boat Line fleet. The boat has the capacity for 600 passengers. In the 2009/2010 offseason, The Miller ferry upgraded the Put-in-Bay extension to add a 40-foot steer midsection. After adding the extension, the boat is now able to hold 26 vehicles!
Motor Vessel Put-in-Bay
The M/V Put-in-Bay completed its construction back in 1997. The motor vessel has the capacity to carry up to 500 passengers. The twin 3412 DITA Catepillar boat engines have roughly 1300 horsepower to transport passengers and vehicles alike.
Motor Vessel William Market
Constructed in 1993, M/V William Market is the “middle child” in terms of age. This drive on drive off ferry has the capacity to carry 500 passengers and was built in Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin.
Motor Vessel South Bass
The Motor Vessel South Bass is named after South Bass Island, commonly known as Put-in-Bay, OH. The boat was constructed in Cleveland back in 1983. The M/V South Bass has the capacity to carry 500 passengers thanks to its 3412 twin DITA Caterpillar engines with 1240 horsepower.
Motor Vessel Islander
The M/V Islander is the oldest vessel in the Miller Ferry’s fleet. The Islander was constructed in 1983 and is able to carry up to 450 passengers. Twin Detroit Diesel engines with 700 horsepower power the ferry vessel the waters of Lake Erie.
Miller Boat Line History
Before the Miller Boat Line Ferry company was founded in 1966, the best way to get to the island by steamboat. In the early 1900s Put-in-Bay had established itself through its winery culture. Tens of thousands of visitors each year would visit the island and stay at the Hotel Victory. The Hotel Victory featured over 625 guest rooms and the first ever co-ed swimming pool in the United States. Unfortunately, the Hotel Victory tragically burned down to the ground in 1919.
In 1978, Billy Market and his family purchased the boat line. The Market family still owns and operates the ferry company to this day. As of 2020, the fleet of 6 ferries operate and service the Lake Erie transportation needs of Put-in-Bay and Middle Bass Island. Ferries run on the half hour during the busiest times of the year. During the winter, the ferry line has historically ceased operation when Lake Erie freezes over. Click here to read more about the history of Put-in-Bay and The Miller Ferry.
Miller Ferry Frequently Asked Questions
What is the address to the Miller Ferry mainland dock?
The address to the Miller Ferry is 5174 E Water St, Port Clinton, OH 43452. Although the address is technically within the Port Clinton city limits, the mainland dock is situated on the northern tip of Catawba Island. The Miller Ferry is about an hour away from both Cleveland and Toledo. Those visiting from Sandusky can get to the Miller Ferry in less than 25 minutes.
How much does the Miller Ferry cost?
Ferry ticket prices vary between one-way and round trip fares. The Miller Ferry offer the lowest fares for any ferry service to Put-in-Bay.
One way passenger tickets are $7.50 for adults, $1.50 for children aged 6-11 and kid under 6 ride for free.
Vehicle tickets are $18.00 for cars, $16.00 for motorcycles and $2.00 for bicycles.
Can you bring alcohol to Put-in-Bay?
Yes you can bring alcohol to Put-in-Bay on the Miller Ferry. However, passengers must always abide by the State of Ohio’s open container policy both on the ferry and on the island. In addition, The Put-in-Bay Police Department strictly prohibit illegal consumption of alcohol and do not hesitate to take legal action.
Does the Miller Ferry go to Kelley’s Island?
The Miller Ferry does not offer service to Kelley’s Island. The Miller Boat line serves as the primary passenger service to both Put-in-Bay and Middle Bass Island. The ferry company makes frequent trips to both South Bass and Middle Bass Island.
Where does the Miller Ferry drop you off?
Once the ferry boat has departed from the mainland Ohio dock, the boat arrives at the southwestern shore of the island in roughly 18 minutes. To get to downtown Put-in-Bay, consider taking an Island Club or Put-in-Bay Condos Taxi for just $3 per person.
What other Put-in-Bay Ferries are available?
The only other ferry option that travels from mainland Ohio to Put-in-Bay is the Jet Express Ferry. This ferry leaves from downtown Port Clinton and arrives to Put-in-Bay in about 35 minutes. The high-speed ferry unloads in the heart of the downtown Put-in-Bay harbor.