In 2012, Catalina Express celebrated its 30th year of service to Catalina Island. Starting with only one boat and one phone, Catalina Express has emerged as the leader of marine transportation to Catalina Island. Each year, more than one million passengers set sail to Catalina Island on board Catalina Express.
"It’s amazing to see how much the business has grown and changed over the past 30 years. I believe the success of Catalina Express has been made possible because of our loyal customers and employees”
- Greg Bombard, President
Catalina Express began in 1981 when three Catalina Island residents realized the need for fast, reliable transportation to and from the island. Doug Bombard, his son Greg Bombard and long time colleague, Tom Rutter, worked tirelessly to make the vision a reality. Since then more than 25 million passengers have set sail to Catalina Island on board Catalina Express.
In its first year of service Catalina Express operated with one, 60-passenger vessel. The founders worked closely with boat builders to design vessels with innovative features like full ride control systems for stability, modern navigational systems, airline-style cabin seating, panoramic viewing windows, and on-deck seating, which won immediate acceptance from passengers.