Does Marine Atlantic have its own time zone?

by Darrell Mercer

What time is it…well that depends!

The Island of Newfoundland is a very unique place; we have our own dialects, food delicacies, a dictionary, and romantic community names that you will find nowhere else in the world.  Of course, we also have our own time zone, Newfoundland Standard Time which is 30 minutes ahead of the Atlantic Time zone used in Nova Scotia.

All of Marine Atlantic’s vessels operate on Newfoundland Standard Time, regardless of where they are docked. So if you are in the parking lot in North Sydney, the instant you get on the vessel you skip ahead 30 minutes. Imagine waving to your friends on shore knowing you are a half hour ahead of them. Yes, time travel is this easy!

You may also notice that Marine Atlantic, similar to other modes of travel, uses a 24-hour clock for departure and arrival information. That means that 10:00 in the morning is 1000, and 10:00 at night becomes 2200. There is no am or pm designation with the 24-hour clock; each hour is unique during the day. Confused, think of it this way:


The 24-hour clock helps prevent confusion between a morning departure or arrival time and an afternoon or evening time later the same day.

Between time zone changes, the 24-hour clock and the ability to spend hours watching whales or enjoying our vessels’ on board amenities, it’s easy to feel lost in time. If you have any questions during your voyage, please speak to a member of our crew who will be happy to provide you with the correct time in either French or English.