Variable-density groundwater flow was simulated to examine the effects that tide has on the coastward migration of a contaminant through a freshwater/saltwater interface and toward a coastal ocean boundary. Simulated ocean tides did not significantly affect the total contaminant mass input to the ocean; however, the difference in tidal and non-tidal simulated concentrations could be as much as 15%. It may be possible to numerically approximate the tidal-driven hydraulic transients in transport models that do not explicitly include tides by locally increasing dispersivity. Copyright ?? 2007 IAHS Press.