Catalina Express

Catalina Express, Catalina Island: Tickets, Tours, Address, Phone Number, Catalina Express Reviews: 4.5/5

Catalina Express
4.5
About
With 8 boats and up to 30 daily departures year-round from Long Beach, San Pedro and Dana Point, Catalina Express is the best way to get to Catalina Island. In about an hour, you could be hiking, biking, shopping, diving, snorkeling, fishing, dining, stand up paddling, kayaking, relaxing at a spa or kicking back at the beach club. Just 22 miles from LA, but a world of difference. (Don't forget to upgrade to the Commodore Lounge and skip the lines with priority check-in, express boarding, plus a complimentary cocktail or soft drink, and more. Just $15 each way.)
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4.5
431 reviews
Excellent
275
Very good
114
Average
30
Poor
3
Terrible
9

Christina H
San Carlos, Mexico232 contributions
Good choice for travel to Catalina Island
Sep 2021 • Family
The boat was on time both coming and going. Everything, including luggage drop was well organized. The seats were comfortable and there were option for both indoor and outdoor seating.
Written September 30, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Pinevalleyite
Phoenix, AZ480 contributions
Excellent way to get to Catalina Island
Sep 2021
Booked in advance and left from Long Beach. Easy to park ($19) and get our actual tickets at the window for our reservation on an 11am Thursday trip over. Boat starts to load about 1/2 hour before leaving so when they say you have to be there an hour before, I'd temper that. It takes a while to get everyone on. Seats were comfortable and lots of windows and restrooms. Bring your own water as due to Covid, they are not allowed to serve anything. Masks were required but that's a federal mandate on all trains, boats, and airplanes so we're used to it. My family gets seasick so took Dramamine before departing but it was a really smooth ride. I did hear a couple of people didn't feel good but some are more sensitive to the motion and you are on the boat for a bit over an hour. Crew is exceptional and helps you on and off and easy to get back to the ship for the return as Catalina is small and we only went to Avalon.
Written September 11, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful experience to Catalina Island. We love hearing about our passengers’ trips. Thank you for writing a review and we look forward to having you aboard again soon!
Written September 13, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Brisnna
6 contributions
Disgusting company
Jun 2021 • Solo
They left a passenger in the water and didn’t have the correct rescue protocol. Their excuse to the family is oh we never experienced this in 40 years. After not finding him they went straight back to business! They haven’t even offered to help the family find him.This is a disgusting company and I will make sure that I’ll let everyone know what you did. #bringkeionhome
Written June 15, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Jenise B
6 contributions
"Normal" Experience
Nov 2020
I originally came to Catalina in November 2020 during the time that the Commodore package was available. It included luxury seats and a drink with a view.

Unfortunately, they do not offer that option anymore..not sure when they will offer it again.
Otherwise, its a 75 minute ferry ride, wearing a mask, with no option of even water to bring on board or buy.

I'm giving 5 stars for the "normal" experience. I don't want to askew ratings for this ferry because of COVID restrictions.

Hopefully, it will return to normal soon.
Written March 31, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you so much for sharing your experience to Catalina Island. We love hearing about our passengers’ trips. We apologize for any inconvenience. Due to the latest Los Angeles County restrictions, Los Angeles Public Health has directed Catalina Express to close our onboard galleys and prohibit the consumption of personal food and beverage items on board. Thank you for writing a review and we look forward to having you aboard again soon!
Written April 2, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

SamMiddletown
Middletown387 contributions
GOOD EXPERIENCE
Oct 2020
Great way to get over to Catalina Island. Very enjoyable boat ride. The crew did a great job getting everyone off, and back on for the return trip. Highly Recommend.
Written December 19, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you for your kind review. We are glad that our customer service was able to provide you with excellent care. We hope to have you aboard again soon.
Written December 31, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Dorothy G
7 contributions
Smooth ride over and back!
Nov 2020 • Family
This is the 2nd year in a row that I have used Catalina Express to go over and back to Catalina Island! Very smooth ride over and back and all the crew are so nice! Will definitely go again with these guys! Hopefully this company will be able to still operate so these nice men have jobs to support themselves and their families no thanks to Emperor Newsom who wants to shut everything down again in California. Glad I live in Texas. I feel bad for the hardworking people of California who are just trying to survive and pay their bills! Go on this ferry snd show your support for them!!! My son who is stationed at Camp Pendleton went with me both times. I came out to see him the 2nd year in a row!
Written November 25, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful experience to Catalina Island. We love hearing about our passengers’ trips. Thank you for writing a review and we look forward to having you aboard again soon!
Written November 30, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Robin Ray Writer
Stanton, CA44 contributions
Professional and reliable
Oct 2020
They are always professional and reliable. They offer many options to go back and forth. Be prepared to wait a little bit though because many people take the boats to and from Catalina Island. So give yourself plenty of time coming and going. Seating is first come first sit.
Written November 5, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful experience to Catalina Island. We love hearing about our passengers’ trips. Thank you for writing a review and we look forward to having you aboard again soon!
Written November 5, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

hitch
Ventura, CA192 contributions
If You Are Worried About COVID, Don't Go
Oct 2020
The crossing was smooth and took about 75 minutes, even with dense fog. The crossing is rather expensive for a short beach vacation. It was a hot weekend so the general boarding downstairs was booked. We rode in the Commodore Lounge, which is on the top deck. The most special thing about it is that the boarding is much faster than general boarding and you get 1 free drink on board. General boarding stood in the hot sun for a long time before boarding. You might be lucky if you get one of the 2 seats that have a table between them. The seating up there is like a row of a 767 (2 - 3 - 2). There is overhead storage like a plane so you probably won't need to store anything down below.
The shore staff and the boat crew were strict about wearing masks. That didn't prevent some very arrogant and entitled people from trying to abuse the policy wherever possible. A few people in the Commodore Lounge were warned, on both going and returning trips. There was a loud altercation while we were preparing to leave the dock, and the Captain threatened to throw one man off the boat. I wish he had. The Captain showed great restraint.
This was a very busy weekend in Avalon for October, probably because of the hot weather forecast. The Catalina Express was full and the town of Avalon was packed full. There are a number of restaurants and shops, and small hotels. We stayed at the Hotel Catalina. It is an old hotel with all the charm and some of the inconveniences one should expect.
With regard to COVID, there were many noncompliant people on the ferry and around the downtown. There are big signs everywhere telling people to wear masks and stay 6 meet apart but about a third ignored this. Some places seemed closed. The Catalina Museum (which looked interesting) was closed. Some of the restaurants had outdoor dining, but some were only open for dinner. There was generally a real lack of outdoor tables. We had trouble finding a safe place for breakfast or lunch.
Some restaurants did a good job of distancing tables, while others crammed people in. The best and the safest was the Bluewater Grill. It has a lot of outdoor dining overlooking the harbor. The food and service were great, and one could feel safe there. The town itself is very small and you can explore every inch of it in about an hour. But be prepared to walk up some hills.
Written October 26, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you so much for sharing your experience to Catalina Island. We value all of our customers and take seriously all positive or negative feedback concerning our service. Thank you for writing a review and we look forward to having you aboard again soon!
Written October 30, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Blevy84
New York City, NY1 contribution
Didn’t realize I was booking a political ferry ride
Sep 2020 • Couples
Yesterday my wife and I, and a couple of our friends took the Catalina Express ferry round trip from San Pedro to Avalon. The ride over was perfect and we even got to see a large pod of dolphins. Unfortunately, on our return ride from Avalon, we were quite shocked and irritated that the captain or crew member who was making the safety announcement as we departed made a sarcastic jab about wearing masks due to COVID. The person on the speaker said “Because of our wonderful governor, all of us have to wear masks”. This was incredibly unprofessional, unnecessary, and kind of put a damper on what was a beautiful day. Honestly, there are so much politics surrounding all of our daily lives, this trip to Catalina was supposed to be an escape from that. We don’t need to hear sarcastic, ignorant and politically driven comments from a public transportation company during a safety announcement. Wearing masks may be inconvenient for many, but it’s the responsible thing to do during a freaking pandemic. Considering the tickets aren’t cheap, we will be sure to use another ferry company that doesn’t pawn off their political and pandemic ideology.
Written October 1, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you for contacting Catalina Express. We value all of our customers and take seriously all positive or negative feedback concerning our service. Thank you for bringing this matter to our attention. Your review has been sent to the appropriate manager for further review. We hope you will give Catalina Express another try in the future.
Written October 2, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Samiotisa
Arlington Heights, IL34 contributions
Horrendous!
Aug 2020 • Family
Horrendous! They could not find our reservation even though I PAID for it via telephone the prior evening, and would NOT allow us on the ferry until I paid AGAIN for the same tickets!!

No amount of rational explanation was sufficient for the snotty woman at the ticket window to locate our paid for reservation. We had to make the ferry, so were forced to pay in duplicate. Preposterous!
Written August 12, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you for bringing this to our attention and apologize for any inconvenience. Customer service is a core value of Catalina Express and we take all matters concerning our service very seriously. If you would like to file a formal complaint, please contact our corporate office at 310.519.7971 and ask to speak to our Passenger Services Representative.
Written August 14, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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