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A specially constructed vessel to bring passengers and property across rivers and other bodies of water from one shoreline to another, making contact with a thoroughfare at each terminus. The landing place for a boat. A right or privilege to maintain a vessel upon a body of water in order to transport people and their vehicles across it in exchange for payment of a reasonable toll. Technically a ferry is considered a continuation of a highway from one side of the body of water that it passes over to the other.

The privilege of handling a ferry is called a franchise. A ferry franchise is a permit from the state to a specifically named individual giving that person the authority to operate a ferry. It is a general prerequisite to the lawful establishment of a public ferry. The operator of a ferry is not relieved of the duty to obtain a franchise by formation of a company, since the franchise becomes a contract between the owner and the state.

Usually the grant of a ferry franchise implicitly gives the recipient the power to collect tolls. Ferriage is the fare that the ferry operator may charge. The unauthorized establishment of another ferry within competing distance of an already existing one constitutes an infringement of the ferry franchise, even in the absence of physical interference.

A ferry franchise can be terminated either by expiration of its term or by revocation by the licensing authorities. It is generally subject to renewal, for which the original owner is usually given a preference.

A public ferry is for use by the public at large, whereas a private ferry is operated solely for the benefit of its proprietor.

The state has intrinsic authority to regulate and control ferries that operate within its borders. It may exercise such power by law or by contract with the operator. The state may regulate the transportation of dangerous articles, the nature and frequency of service, and the location of terminals. In addition, it may impose a license fee or tax on the operation of ferries within its boundaries.


a legal right to charge for transporting passengers by boat. See REGALIA MINORA.
References in periodicals archive ?
The Ferryboat is situated in Fishguard Bay, and only 600 metres from the entrance of the international port of Fishguard harbour, which has regular crossings to Ireland.
The source said that the ferryboat owned by one of the locals sailed from the Niyabat of Shinna to Masirah Island with 40 citizens and a number of vehicles on board.
At these times only route 56 will be unable to serve Nissan in either direction and will divert via Spire Road, A1231 and Ferryboat Lane in both directions.
During one of the journeys to Masirah Island, Sayyid Asa'ad was briefed about the utilities on the passenger deck and vehicle deck of the new ferryboat, Jawharat Masirah.
The joint liquidators published a message to creditors which read: "A general final meeting of the members of Flavour Bar Limited will be held at Tenon House, Ferryboat Lane, Sunderland, Tyne and Wear, SR5 3JN on 26 September 2014 at 11am to be followed at 11.
There being no bridges or ferryboat on the Red Deer river, he built a skiff about 3 feet by 12 feet which he used for the dual purpose of boat and wagon box to facilitate the crossing of the river.
Out and About On November 12, Waterstones Glasgow will host The Guga, the Ferry and the Girl, a Gaelic evening with Angus Peter Campbell, who will be launching his new novel, The Girl on the Ferryboat.
Judge and president also reportedly boarded the tragedy of the asylum-seekers in Australia whose ferryboat capsized offshore Indonesia.
SCALING THE HEIGHTS: Richard Lyons, secretary of the Huddersfield Society of Model Engineers, with his model of the Loch Mor Ferryboat (AC160613Fmode)
The Edgewater Marketplace shares a parking field with the Binghamton Ferryboat restaurant and nightclub, the only permanently moored floating restaurant along the Hudson River, that is currently closed and awaiting reuse.
Meanwhile, search operations are still on for at least 100 people who have gone missing after a packed ferryboat carrying over 300 passengers capsized due to heavy storm at Burha-Burhi Char under Fakirganj police station in Dhubri District on Monday.
The ferryboat linking Vidin with Romanian town Calafat across the Danube is nevertheless still in service.