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Travel Planning and Advice

We are open for business and our tours are running.

We wish to reassure all of our trade partners that Wilderness Scotland is bonded with ABTA and therefore your clients will have 100% financial security.

 

100% Financial Security
We Are Good to Go
Tours are Running

We love the UK and Ireland and we love welcoming travellers to this part of the world to show you places that your clients wouldn’t normally see.

We remain true to our values and want to reopen in a gentle way that respects each of our travellers, while in equal measure respecting the communities that we visit.

We’re Good to Go is the industry standard that has been created across all 4 nations in the UK to show that we as a business have followed the government and industry guidelines, have an updated risk assessment in place and have the processes in place to maintain cleanliness and aid social distancing.

Click the dropdowns below to reveal details of the measures we’ve put in place to make your clients trip feel all the more comfortable in the moments when they are not out there in the wild places of the UK and Ireland.

Our Assurance

We understand that your clients may be a bit nervous about travelling in the current circumstances. Of course, there will be changes to our usual way of operating. However, we want to assure you and your clients that we are well-prepared and ready to provide a fantastic, rewarding and safe holiday.

As we have offices based in both Scotland and Ireland and are living with the current guidance ourselves, we are on hand to provide help and guidance for you and your clients.

This page outlines the main changes we are making. During each trip, your client’s guide will ensure that everyone understands the procedures – generally simple-to-follow rules which most people are likely already living by already. 

Our updated operating procedures have been guided by advice from:

  • Scottish, UK and Irish Governments
  • Adventure Travel Trade Association (ATTA)
  • Wild Scotland (trade association for activity and nature-based operators in Scotland).
  • Action groups at national and local level

We’ve reached out to local contacts across the UK and Ireland to ensure that local communities are happy for us to visit and explore their beautiful landscapes. They are ready to welcome visitors and so are we. We look forward to seeing you soon!

Planning a UK & Ireland Trip

Travellers with Existing Bookings Read More

As the Scottish Government guidance updated on the 15th July, we are now operational and running our full range of small group tours, private tours and tailor-made holidays. If you are currently booked on a trip with us, you can plan on your trip going ahead unless you hear from us to the contrary.

Please be aware that we are working to Government guidelines, as well as with local suppliers, and as such things are subject to change at short notice. Due to the changing nature of the guidelines any trips we run over the next few months may well look different to trips run in the past, however, all inclusions will still be a part of the trip and therefore any changes do not equate to a “significant change” as defined by the package tour regulations.

Due to the current uncertainty around travel, if you are currently booked on a trip we are allowing postponement to a future trip up to 35 days before the trip starts. However, if you have to cancel your place on the trip after this deadline, then it will not be possible to postpone your place and your trip payments will be forfeited.

In some cases, we may be in touch with you to say the trip cannot be confirmed until closer to travel time. If this is the case then you have the option of staying on the trip until we can confirm if the trip is running, or postponing your trip to a future date.

As with any travel we strongly recommend that you have trip/travel insurance. This should cover any last-minute trip cancellation as well as any travel undertaken to get to and from the trip.

The UK and Scottish governments have advised that lockdown restrictions could be reinstated if necessary. If this is the case we will be in touch as soon as possible to discuss these changes and your options.

We are still awaiting industry-specific advice from the Irish government, which should be forthcoming soon.

New Bookings Read More

We are welcoming new bookings for 2020 and 2021.

We have plenty of private adventures (perfect for your bubble) on hand. If your clients want something customised, our friendly team is available to chat through options.

Please note that any new booking will only be accepted on the provision that if the trip is unable to go ahead due to Covid-19 restrictions, the trip will be suspended. Trip payments will be held indefinitely and can be put towards any Wilderness Scotland or Wilderness Ireland trip in the future.

Must Read - Traveller Responsibility Read More

1. We request that all travellers bring a minimum of 2 reusable masks so you can wash one each evening and leave the other to dry.
2. That clients declare to us if they have had Covid or Covid-like symptoms.
3. That clients self-health check regularly and declare to the guide as soon as possible if they do feel any Covid symptoms. It would be beneficial if you would bring a thermometer to keep track of your temperature.
4. That clients do not travel if feeling unwell or are symptomatic before the trip.
5. That each client agree in good grace to follow all guidelines and procedures set out by the Wilderness guide and any suppliers we use.

Current Situation in the UK Read More

The Scottish Government guidance allowed tourism businesses, including hotels, restaurants and pubs to reopen from the 15th July. 

For more info, visit:

ABTA, of which we are members and provide our customers with 100% financial security, provide a broad set of Q & A that is useful for all, including inbound travellers from international locations.

Finally we recommend reading the WHO situation reports, which are updated daily and provide an ‘in numbers’ view of the virus.

 

Current Situation in Ireland Read More

The Irish Government has created a Roadmap to reopening, though we are still awaiting tourism industry-specific info.

For more info, visit:

The government has introduced a structured, phased reopening plan summarised as follows:
  • May 18th – Outdoor and heritage sites, including beaches and mountain trails reopen as well as some non-essential retail
  • June 8th – Workplaces begin to reopen, small social gatherings and outdoor sports allowed
  • June 15th – Retail centres reopen
  • June 29th – Hotels, museums, galleries and restaurants reopen
  • July 20th – Larger social gatherings allowed, all other workplaces open
  • Aug 31st – Pubs and hotel bars are set to reopen, gatherings of up to 100 people indoors and 500 outdoors will be permissible
Travel Advisories and Inbound Health Measures Read More

If you are travelling from outside the UK then you must review the contents of this section of the Scottish Government guidance before considering travel to Scotland.

Travel advice for travellers visiting the UK from common locations.

United States   |   Canada   |   Australia

We recommend you check your own government advice with regards travel to the UK and Scotland.

Travel advise for travellers visiting Ireland from common locations.

United States   |   Canada   |   Australia   |  United Kingdom

We recommend you check your own government advice with regards to travel to Ireland.

 

Pre-Trip Information Read More

Be sure to remind clients to read through all pre-trip information for new Covid-19 details and requirements, such as bringing your own face masks, and being aware rules which apply in Scotland but may be different to rules where your clients live.

We recommend you and your clients also check with airline/train companies for specific requirements they may have in place.

We genuinely sweat the details so that you can rest at ease knowing that you’re in safe hands and there’ll be no unwanted surprises. Raise any questions with us ahead of your clients trip – we’re delighted to help.

Reassure Your Clients They're Still on Holiday Read More

It may be a bit different to your clients’ last holiday. But spending time in nature is healthy for the body and for the soul.

The info on this page and in your clients pre-trip pack will help to prepare your clients on what to expect and feel confident about travelling.

Standing on top of a hill or cresting a climb on your bike will feel as amazing as it always has. As you soak in the views and relish the feeling of personal achievement, it will feel like a holiday!

And one thing is for sure – many of us need a break after the past few months. So come and enjoy the space, freedom, wild landscapes and fresh air which Scotland and Ireland are famous for.

Will clients need to wear a mask? Read More

All travellers will need to wear a mask while travelling in our vehicles and in other locations specified by Government regulations (e.g. shops).

There may be occasions when travellers will need to put a mask on briefly – for example, if your guide is assisting you with some equipment.

But you can reassure your clients they will not need a mask during the day’s activities – so they can hike, cycle or paddle breathing in the fresh Highland air and enjoying unencumbered views.

Will we be socially distancing while on a trip? Read More

Yes.

As we are all already social distancing, it should simply be a continuation of normal practice and respect for fellow travellers.

It’s fortunate that in the wild and remote places we visit, social distancing is easy to adopt. The guide will be available to explain any local practices or requirements.

Can my clients bring my own car instead of travelling in your vehicle? Read More

Yes.

Where it is practical to do so, your clients are welcome to use their own vehicle throughout the trip.

There will be no reduction in price as we will still be operating our vehicle on the trip. Trips which involve ferry crossings may be more challenging to arrange due to limited capacity on some ferries.

If your clients are planning to bring their own vehicle, you must let us know as soon as possible so that we can plan accordingly.

Will the locals be welcoming? Read More

We’ve run trips in Scotland for 20 years and in Ireland for 6 years, so are extremely well-connected in communities across the country.

While there will always be some who disagree, the overwhelming feeling, and our own experience, is that communities across the UK and Ireland are really looking forward to welcoming visitors once again.

Insurance Read More

As always, it is important to have adequate travel insurance which covers your clients specific needs, including any known medical conditions or activities they plan to do.

It is also worth checking the detail of the policy around travel disruption including delays or cancellations as policies do vary.

The Association of British Insurers has a Q & A that is more relevant for travellers from the UK but raises useful questions to put to your clients’ own insurer.

The On-Trip Experience

The Wilderness Guide Read More

All of our guides will complete training on our new operating procedures before leading a trip.

As well as ensuring the safety of your clients and the other travellers, the guide will be able to advise the group on relevant procedures so that each traveller can play their part in keeping the whole group all safe while still enjoying their holiday.

Equipment and Vehicles Read More

All of our equipment will be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected before being re-issued for the next trip. On trips, any equipment your client is given will be theirs throughout the trip rather than a shared piece of equipment. Of course, our guides will be able to clean and disinfect equipment as required during the trip.

We will limit capacity in our vehicles to 5 travellers, unless it is a private group from the same household. This means more space and comfort for everyone. As additional mitigation, all passengers will be asked to wear face coverings and windows will remain open to provide fresh air circulation.

Of course, all vehicles will be subject to enhanced cleaning. Hand sanitiser will be available in the vehicles.

Hotels and Food & Drink Read More

Accommodations: Each accommodation may have slightly different arrangements in place to ensure it is operating safely. The guide will explain to clients the arrangements at each accommodation before arrival.

Restaurant: Each restaurant and cafe will have slightly different arrangements in place to ensure it is operating safely. The guide will explain the arrangements before entering. One change returning clients may notice is that groups won’t eat together at one group table. Instead, groups will be split into smaller tables for social distancing.

Snacks: We will continue to provide snacks throughout the trip to keep everyone fuelled! However, snacks will be individually allocated rather than being from a shared basket.

First Aid Procedures Read More

Our guides have been trained in updated first aid best practices designed to keep themselves and the rest of the group safe from infection in the unlikely event of an accident.

Staying Healthy While Travelling Read More

Hygiene advice has not changed since the start of the outbreak, so we reiterate it below as so often the basic messages get lost in all the noise.

Frequent and thorough hand-washing with soap for at least 20 seconds is a key method of avoiding contracting and spreading any germs while travelling and is seen as particularly important to avoid Coronavirus / COVID-19. If hand-washing and soap are not available, then hand sanitizer is recommended.

Avoid touching your eyes, mouth and nose unless your hands are clean.

Avoid close contact with people that look or feel unwell, their personal items and any surfaces they may have touched. Maintaining a distance of over 1 meter is recommended by the World Health Organisation.

If your client is on any medication, please ask them to pack additional supplies should their return home be postponed.

The World Health Organisation understand that the virus is spread via droplets and those droplets landing on surfaces. It is not airborne and therefore cannot be transmitted through being on the same airplane.

We recommend visiting this World Health Organisation page on protective measures you can take to minimise the risk to yourself and others.

 

Steps We're Taking to Protect Travellers on Our Tours Read More

Our clients health and safety is of the utmost importance to us. See below the steps we are taking to protect our clients and mitigate the risk of contracting and spreading Coronavirus / COVID-19 while travelling on our tours.

  • Capacity in our vehicles has been limited to 5 travellers.
  • We request that all travellers wear a face mask while in our vehicles at all times.
  • While vehicles are moving, we’ll ensure that windows are open to increase fresh airflow and circulation.
  • Each vehicle will be thoroughly sanitised at start and end of the trip. 
  • Each vehicle will be provided with hand sanitiser and tissues. 
  • We will dispose of any rubbish bag with tissues at the end of every day. 
  • We use the sanitizing spray to wipe down van surfaces daily.

We request that all clients DO:

  • Notify your guide if you are feeling unwell at the earliest opportunity.
  • Meet and greet your guide and other participants with the namaste gesture.
  • Avoid unnecessary personal contact (hugs, kisses, high-fives etc.) and passing around of objects. 
  • Please make the effort not to touch your face and follow the personal hygiene recommendations.
  • Wash your hands properly and often.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve when you cough and sneeze.
  • Put used tissues into a bin and wash your hands.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are not well.
  • Stay at home if you are sick to help stop the spread of whatever infection you may have.

We request that all clients DON’T:

  • Do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean.
  • Do not share objects that touch your mouth – for example, bottles.
  • Do not pass your phone or camera to others.

Above all, we want to be as respectful of each client’s feelings and concerns surrounding Coronavirus / COVID-19 and we would request that if you are travelling with us, that you make your feelings known in an understanding and respectful way to your guide, so that they, in turn, can make any necessary adjustments and relay information as appropriate to the group.

If Your Client or Someone in the Group Becomes Unwell Read More

The symptoms of Coronavirus / COVID-19 are:

  • A dry cough
  • A raised temperature (over 37.3 C)
  • Shortness of breath

This does not necessarily mean that you have the virus but UK government and UK National Health Service advice is that you call 111 if you suspect you have symptoms. This is applicable for visitors to Scotland, England, Northern Ireland and Wales.

Please note that our guides have been trained on how to handle a situation where they or a member of the group show symptoms of Covid-19. This forms a key part of our updated operating procedures and is in line with Government advice.

It is requested that anyone with these symptoms do not visit a doctor’s surgery, hospital or pharmacy.

For more information, we recommend visiting the following pages:

 

 

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