VICTORIA -- BC Ferries has reduced the number of sailings to the Southern Gulf Islands for the next 60 days due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Starting Friday, only the Salish Raven vessel, based out of Swartz Bay, will connect the Southern Gulf Islands to the mainland.

The Salish Raven will travel between Pender Island, Mayne Island, Galiano Island, Swartz Bay and Tsawwassen.

Meanwhile, the Queen of Cumberland ship will travel between Swartz Bay, Saturna, Mayne, Galiano and Pender islands.

Sailings to Salt Spring Island have also been reduced to just the Swartz Bay to Fulford Harbour route and Crofton and Vesuvius route. All service to Long Harbour on Salt Spring Island has been suspended for the next two months.

Anyone with reservations on any of the cancelled routes will automatically be provided with a refund, says BC Ferries.

A full look at BC Ferries new sailing schedules to the Southern Gulf Islands can be found online here.

“BC Ferries is dedicated to providing a safe and healthy travel experience for its passengers and employees,” said the company.

“At this time, the company is advising customers to avoid any non-essential travel, including the upcoming Easter long weekend.”