Bus & Boat Method: Cost-effective, slightly time consuming, and by far the most popular method of travel. The bus ride from Logan to Woods Hole takes about 2 hours. Driving a car would take at least 90 minutes (not counting traffic and there is always traffic), plus parking and a 20-minute shuttle bus trip to the ferry dock). The one-way ferry ride from Woods Hole to Martha’s Vineyard (islandferry.com) is 45 minutes and costs $8.50 one way.
Some tips from a Pro:
Check the bus schedule, like right now
If you are still in the planning phase of your travel arrangements, take a moment to check the Peter Pan Bus schedules from Boston Logan Airport to Woods Hole (peterpanbus.com). Select a flight arriving at least 60 minutes before your scheduled bus to Woods Hole; this will give you ample time to get your luggage and find the departure area for the bus line, which is on the baggage claim level. If you have questions, ask a person at the information desk on the baggage claim level.
Purchase tickets in advance
I highly recommend purchasing bus tickets in advance. Back in the good old days, you were able to buy tickets on the bus; now Peter Pan wants everyone to have one before they board. If your travel is delayed and you need to take a bus other than at your ticketed time, the drivers are usually flexible about letting travelers on if there is room.
Buses meet boats (…but buses can be late)
In general, Peter Pan buses are scheduled to connect with departing ferries with minimal wait times. However, this doesn’t always happen; Boston traffic can delay your trip, and occasionally even the ferry itself can cancel a trip due to maintenance issues or bad weather. If you miss your hoped-for ferry time, do not panic! Depending on the time of year, the ferry runs until about 9:00 pm. Check the schedule.
Fly. Many people do not know this, but Martha’s Vineyard does have an airport, two airports in fact, though one is just a grassy field. Flying is the most efficient way to get to the Vineyard but can be costly. Check out Martha’s Vineyard Airport for current carriers (mvyairport.com/airlines). A word of caution for the nervous flyer; Cape Air planes are small, like 12 seats, no co-pilot, no bathroom, no flight attendant. Small. On the plus side, the flights are only 35 minutes and provide a lovely birds-eye view of the island. Once you arrive on-island you can take the bus or a taxi to the Madison Inn, or wherever your final destination may be :-).
Look into hiring a Car Service. Depending on how many people you are traveling with, it could be the least stressful and most affordable option for getting to Woods Hole. Rates start at around $250, plus a tip for your friendly driver.