Routing with Ferries

The v8 HERE Routing service will evaluate ferry connections in its route calculations and can suggest ferry transport for parts of the route if they are evaluated to be the optimal path.

For the route calculation the service makes some general assumptions about onboarding and offloading times and speed of travel of a ferry. However, since ferry usage patterns can differ from region to region these assumptions may not be true in some areas and the calculated routes can differ from expectations. Our recommendation in these cases is to guide the route calculation by adding a pass-through waypoint on the preferred ferry route near the port closest to the origin.

Situations where the route calculations would need guidance include:

  • Areas with short ferry links where our general assumptions for onboarding & offloading times differ from actual time taken. For example, ferries over rivers.
  • Areas with long ferry links which have a low frequency and hence are assigned a lower significance.
  • User preference for slower but direct ferry transport rather than faster routes involving more on-land driving.

The example below illustrates how to use a waypoint to guide the route calculation based on local knowledge.

Figure-1 shows the route calculated for a truck with the fast routingMode between Helsinki and Rostock for two use-cases. The one in red is the one presented when no other input is provided. This route gets the vehicle to its destination in the shortest time based on our general assumptions about ferries. However, if the user prefers to use the direct ferry line instead, they can set a pass-through waypoint(via=53.929829,8.652357!passThrough=true) on the Helsinki-Travemünde ferry route as shown in Figure-2.

curl -X GET,24.91805&destination=54.07906,12.13216&via=59.80881,24.422038!passThrough=true&return=polyline,summary,actions,instructions&spans=notices&transportMode=truck&routingMode=fast


Using a pass-through waypoint that is near the port closest to the origin will give the best results.

Force the ferry selection by placing a pass-through waypoint on the ferry route Zooming in on the waypoint

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