Travelling to the Oki Islands with Your Vehicle
Bring your car or motorcycle on the ferry and drive around the islands!
Are you looking into visiting the Oki Islands with your vehicle? Here is the ultimate guide for travellers who are planning to visit the islands with their cars or motorcycles.
1. Make a reservation
Please make a reservation in advance if you plan to take a vehicle with you on the ferry.
You can make a booking by calling the Oki Kisen Ferry Line (08512-2-1122). Once your reservation is confirmed, please fill in the vehicle boarding form and have a printed version of the form ready with you. You can also fill in the form at the ferry terminal after you’ve arrived (but make sure you have enough time to complete all the necessary procedures).
Other than passenger vehicles, construction vehicles and trucks carrying goods to the islands also travel on these ferries. With the limited space inside the ferry for vehicles, taking a car with you to the islands is not a walk-in/drive-in experience. Please plan ahead and make your reservation in advance to avoid disappointment.
2. Go to the port
You must arrive at the port an hour before the scheduled departure time. Make sure you are at the right port for your ferry!
3. Purchase your tickets
Enter the terminal building and fill in the vehicle boarding form (if you haven’t already done so). The passengers of the vehicle will need to fill in the passenger boarding form. You can also download the form and complete it in advance, but don’t forget to bring it with you!
*The driver does not have to fill in the passenger boarding form because the driver’s information is already written on the vehicle boarding form.
Once the forms are ready, proceed to the ticket counter and pass your boarding form(s) and vehicle paperwork (shaken-sho) to the staff. You can pay for your ticket with credit card or cash.
If you are travelling in a group of two or above: You will be given the passenger’s tickets and a number card for the vehicle.
If you are travelling solo: You will be given a passenger’s ticket and a number card for the vehicle.
*The fare is for one vehicle and one driver (Standard 2nd class).
4. Park at the designated area
After purchasing the tickets, the driver must return to the vehicle and display the number card for the vehicle on the windscreen. The driver must then park the vehicle at the designated waiting area; look for the signboard that says “車両航送駐車場” or ask the staff to guide you. Only the driver can take the vehicle on to the ferry; if you are travelling in a group, the other passengers must wait at the ferry terminal for boarding.
5. Time to board
For drivers of vehicles: The crew will give out instructions when it is time to board the ferry. They will call for the vehicles according to the number (displayed on the windscreen). Proceed to board once your number is called, and park at the designated spot.
*The crew will give you signals. Just sit back, relax and wait for your turn.
For foot passengers: Please queue up at the boarding gate on the second floor of the terminal. The boarding time is normally 15 minutes before the scheduled departure time. The ferry crew will check your ticket when you board the ferry. Your ticket will be collected when you disembark from the vessel; keep it safe in your pocket and don’t lose it!
6. Park and relax
After parking the car inside the ferry, the drivers must leave their vehicles and proceed to the passenger deck (kyaku-shitsu). Follow the sign that says “客室入口” (which means “entrance to passenger deck”) and go up the stairs. A crew will be there at the door on the passenger deck to check your ticket.
*For safety reasons, drivers and passengers are not allowed onto the vehicle deck during the crossing. You can leave your luggage inside your car or on your motorcycle but please keep your valuables with you at all times.
7. Enjoy your crossing
For the Standard 2nd class room, Special 2nd class room and 1st class room, you will be sharing the carpeted area with other passengers. Just take off your shoes, lie down and relax! There are some pillows and blankets for you to use inside the ferry. You do not have to pay to use the pillows, but there is a fee for the blankets. The blankets are JPY 30 each and you can pay directly to the crew or insert the coins into the designated box. Please return the pillows and blankets after use.
There are some chairs or sofas on the second floor of the passenger deck (Standard 2nd class room). You can also go on to the deck outside where you can find some benches on the second floor of the passenger deck, towards the rear of the ferry. However, in case of bad weather, it is better to stay inside the passengers’ rooms.
Check out this article for more tips on how to enjoy your crossing.
8. Prepare to disembark
Foot passengers and the driver can disembark the ferry together on the vehicle. Announcements will be made when the ferry is approaching the ports. After the announcement is made, please proceed to the door which will lead you to the vehicle deck (sharyō-kōban). A crew will be there to collect your tickets.
Once you are at the vehicle deck, return to your vehicle immediately and prepare for disembarkation.
*Please do not start the vehicle until you are told to do so.
9. Disembark and start your island journey!
Once the ferry is docked, disembarkation will commence. The crew will give out instructions and will call you for your turn. Start your vehicle after you’re called and voila! Welcome to the Oki Islands!
Author: Cleo Wong