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NYC launches ferry service with Queens, East River routes

Passengers on board a NYC Ferry watch as the boat departs Sunset Park, Brooklyn for Rockaway, Queens, Monday, May 1, 2017, in New York. The new ferry connecting Rockaway, Queens, Brooklyn's Sunset Park and Manhattan inaugurated service Monday. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

NEW YORK (AP) — New York City has launched its new ferry service.

The NYC Ferry service started Monday with a Rockaway, Queens, route . The area got priority because residents there have some of the city’s longest commutes.

The launch also included a previously existing East River route with refurbished ferries.

NYC Ferry will get a South Brooklyn route on June 1. An Astoria, Queens, route begins in August, followed by Lower East Side and Bronx routes in 2018. An estimated 4.6 million passengers a year are expected to use the ferries, which will cut travel times by as much as two-thirds.

A ride costs $2.75, the same as the subway, and includes transfers.

Riders can buy tickets on their smartphones as well as from an agent or a ticket machine.

The ferries are Wi-Fi capable and will serve snacks and alcoholic beverages.

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This story has been corrected by deleting a reference to MetroCards, which cannot be used for the ferries.

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