ALTON- It’s official: the Grafton Ferry will begin operations Friday, April 30 for the 2021 season.

This year, the ferry is expanding its hours and days of operations to give people greater access to the Grafton area. Use of the ferry cuts travel time between Missouri and Illinois by approximately 30 minutes. The ferry can accommodate buses and vans. People are allowed to get out of their vehicles during the trek across the river.

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The ferry will be open Thursdays through Sundays beginning May 6. The ferry will run from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Thursdays; 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Fridays; 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Saturdays; and 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Sundays. Adding an extra day of operation and increasing operating hours on Saturdays is expected to drive more travelers to the Grafton region.

“Everything is ready to go at 10 a.m. Friday, April 30,” said Denise Knight of the Calhoun Ferry Company which operates the Grafton Ferry. The Golden Eagle Ferry, also operated by Calhoun Ferry Company, is open year-round, seven days a week, Knight said. The Golden Eagle connects St. Charles, MO with Calhoun County, IL.

“When the Grafton Ferry opens for the year, it is a signal that the tourism season is in full swing,” said Cory Jobe, President/CEO of the Great Rivers & Routes Tourism Bureau which represents Grafton. “We can’t wait to host all the visitors that come to the area by ferry. By expanding the ferry’s days of operation and hours, we are confident there will be an increase in mid-week tourism in the area.”

Travelers can access the Grafton Ferry at the following sites:

  • Illinois side of the landing is located near the Grafton Lighthouse and the public boat ramp off Market Street in Grafton.
  • Missouri side, the landing is located at the end of Grafton Ferry Road, just off of Highway 94.

Ferry fees include:

Vehicles (passenger cars and small trucks)

$8 One Way

$15 Round Trip


$4 One Way

Foot Passenger

$3 One Way

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$5 One Way

$9 Round Trip

Dual Over One Ton

$9 One Way


$1 per axle One Way


$10 One Way

Semi Tractor Trailer

$13 One Way

Cash and check are accepted. Credit cards cannot be processed.

The Grafton Ferry is operated by the Calhoun Ferry Company which also operates the Golden Eagle Ferry in Calhoun County.

For additional information on ferry operating hours or directions, visit: or contact the Great Rivers & Routes Tourism Bureau at 618-465-6676.

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