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Pirate Water Taxi to resume operations in Tampa on Friday

A new 100-passenger boat will make it easier to socially distance while taking a ride along the Hillsborough River, the company says.

Tampa’s Pirate Water Taxi will resume daily operations starting Friday with a reduced capacity and lots of hand sanitizer, the company has announced.

“We are excited to get back on the water, especially with our brand new 100-passenger water taxi, which will come in handy with social distancing,” said Pirate Water Taxi president and CEO Troy Manthey in a news release. “The health and safety of our crew and riders has always been our top priority. We are taking all necessary precautions to resume operation safely.”

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The waterside taxi service started four years ago has 15 stops around downtown Tampa along the Hillsborough River.

The pirate-themed taxis run daily on the Hillsborough River with 15 stops around downtown Tampa. Boats have restrooms and offer concessions.

New protocols include reduced capacity to ensure six-foot social distancing. All guests will receive hand sanitizer at boarding, and the water taxis will be sanitized every hour, along with high touch points more frequently, a company news release said. The crew will receive health screenings that include temperature checks before starting shifts and are required to wear a mask.

Friday marks the official launch of the new 100-passenger taxi, Captain Jack II. The larger vessel, which was custom-built for Tampa, offers double the capacity and many upgrades. It is equipped with a bar, outside and indoor climate-controlled seating and has a restroom compliant with Americans with Disabilities Act standards, the company said.

Tickets are $20 for adults, $10 for children to hop on and off all day. For information, visit

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