It looks like passengers on B.C. Ferries will soon be able to use their loose change to play slot machines while they travel across the waters. It represents an opportunity to increase much needed government revenues from gambling and provide an entertainment value to a captive audience on the boats. There has been a public outcry opposing this move but gambling has always been a sweet spot for governments to collect much needed revenues from those who can afford it.
In an attempt to save money, B.C. Ferries has made a number of cuts to services totaling $19 million, including nearly 6,895 round-trip sailings per year that represent losing money routes as well as hike fares for seniors by chopping its long-standing seniors discount in half, impacting one million elderly.
The idea to turn ferries into floating casinos was initially raised by former B.C. Ferries president David Hahn, also known as the “million-dollar man” for his enormous public salary and pension package. The idea never got off the ground and Hahn has left the corporation since then.