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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 will certainly be patronized by the public as this is safer, faster and free from monstrous traffic jam in Metro Manila.
Fishguard town centre is a 20 minute walk from The Ferryboat and Haverfordwest is only 16 miles away, which is very handy for shopping and entertainment.
The statement added that most parts of the ferryboat have sank and efforts are under to salvage the wreckage.
He continued to say that the company aims to operate as many ferryboats as possible, especially since the company's new administration oversees the maintenance and operation procedures of the main ferryboats of Egypt and Saudi Arabia, both of which are state-controlled.
Either cross here by paying for a 50p ferryboat ride across (if open) to the start, or retrace steps back to the start.
A few days ago, 22 people drowned and four others had a narrow escape, when a bus with 32 passengers on board slipped off a ferryboat in the Beni Sueif Province, about 75 miles south of Cairo.
In April, a Turkish ferryboat and military cargo plane brought to Turkey hundreds of people who were injured in clashes between Gaddafi forces and the opposition.
Around 34 people were aboard the bus when it skidded off a ferryboat into the Nile in the village of Ashmanet in Beni Seuif, around 150km south of Cairo, it added.
It will be the fourth ferryboat line between the two countries.
Elsewhere in Hunan one person was killed and six others are missing after a ferryboat capsized early on Friday.
The Israeli navy intercepted and seized their small ferryboat on Tuesday.
A regular ferryboat service was inaugurated Saturday between Japan's Kitakyushu and South Korea's Busan, linking northern Kyushu and South Korea via the sea for the first time in about four years.