Key Dates: Steamship Prepares To Open 2024 Reservations

Nantucket Current •

Hazlegrove 8436
The Steamship's M/V Eagle at Steamboat Wharf on Nantucket. Photo by Cary Hazlegrove |

The Steamship Authority has announced its "Head Start" and reservation opening dates for vehicle reservations for the 2024 summer season.

The "Head Start" program allows year-round and seasonal residents of the islands the opportunity to make up to 10 summer reservations prior to the openings of the general public. Head Start is open to all year-round residents (who qualify for the Steamship's Excursion Program) and seasonal homeowners (who qualify for its Preferred Program).


New this year, the first two days of Head Start – January 16 and 17 –will be exclusively for qualified Preferred or Excursion customers to book for their account only. Reservations made on those two days cannot be made in another individual’s name and are nontransferable.

“The change implemented for the first two days of this year’s Head Start program was based on suggestions and recommendations received by island residents,” said Steamship general manager Robert Davis. “The new policy will make it easier for islanders to make advance vehicle reservations during the busy summer season for their own vacations and mainland commitments.”

Starting at 7:30 a.m. on Tuesday, January 16, 2024, Head Start customers may make reservations online and via U.S. mail for travel from May 15, 2024, through October 20, 2024. Eligible customers may make up to 10 one-way or round-trip reservations for travel during the summer schedule.

Starting at 7:30 a.m. Thursday, January 18, up to five reservations can be made directly into another person’s name for personal use. Three of those five reservations can be requested as a transferable reservation, which can be transferred to another individual at a later date. The Head Start reservation period runs through January 22, 2024.


There will be two general online openings – one for Nantucket and one for Martha’s Vineyard. The Authority will have extra technical support on site and the reservation office will have extended hours should a customer need assistance with their login password or PIN. The Authority will also continue to use a virtual waiting room that allows customers to see their “place” in line and the approximate wait time until they can make a transaction, eliminating the need for refreshing the website.

Nantucket General Public Online and Postal Mail Opening: January 23, 2024

Reservations for travel from May 15, 2024, through October 20, 2024, can be made starting at 5 a.m. EST on January 23, 2024. Reservations submitted via postal mail (up to five one-way or round-trip reservations will be accepted per mailing) will be processed as received beginning on this date.

The Reservation Office will have extended hours to provide additional support to our customers on the following dates:

  • 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. EST on January 23, 2024
  • 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. EST from January 24-29, 2024.
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