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How far in advance to book a ferry to Isle of Skye from Mallaig for June 5th travel

How far in advance should I book a ferry to Isle of Skye from Mallaig for June 5th travel? It says to book in advance but I'm not sure if I book a couple days or if I should just do it now.
Thanks

Posted by
187 posts

No harm to book now seeing as you already know your travel dates. Leaving until the last minute runs the risk of the sailing being sold out for vehicles.

Posted by
216 posts

I feel like the information is very conflicted as I ask the same in my “99days until departure” thread. Someone said just pick the best weather day when I get there. Sound like to me that is “play it by ear” We will be taking our car from Oban to Mull. I’ve had a not so good experience with ferry reservations in the past so not sure how to play it. I was told when we went to Greece there would be PLENTY OF FERRY TICKETS when we got there and just get them a day or two in advance. WELL we ended up stuck in Athens for 2 additional day and lost our day trips to the islands since everything was booked solid for a week. Of course there were “private” tours but they were pretty expensive.

Posted by
4 posts

Thanks for the info. Just under 5 months feels pretty far in advance, but since Skye is such a heavy tourist area, I figure the small car allotment on the ferries would suggest I should get them earlier than the recommended day or two in advance. Now I just have to guest at the time arriving via Glencoe that I might need to see things in route such as Glenfinnan Monument, Arisaig, and Morar.

Posted by
749 posts

Two other factors to think about: June 5 is a Friday, so there will be additional “weekend” demand. Second, there are fewer sailings on that date because of lower than average tides.

On a car trip through the Hebrides, I was advised by my B and B host to book my car ferry place early because of the tides, and wow I was glad I took her advice. When I arrived, there were many drivers who didn’t plan ahead, with cars lined up at the dock for stand-by.

Posted by
647 posts

If you know your dates then book now. The Calmac staff are very helpful and if something changes you may be able to call them and amend your booking. Also the crossing is not expensive, so the risk of losing money, versus the risk of the not getting on the ferry means I'd book every time. Hope that makes sense! I live here so use the ferries a lot and would never risk not having an advance booking.

Best wishes
Jacqui (Skyegirl)

Posted by
4 posts

Barbara
Is there a better time in the day to purchase? I do not know much about the tide issues. I prefer a mid-afternoon, but will certainly choose accordingly if you think that is an issue.

Posted by
647 posts

The ferry schedules for Skye take account of the tides. Whatever is on the calmac website will be 100% accurate, so just book whichever crossing works for you.

Jacqui (Skyegirl)

Posted by
74 posts

We are also traveling June 5! We will be driving from Glencoe to Mallaig to catch the ferry. How much time should we allow for the drive to the ferry?

Posted by
4 posts

Cindy, that's a great question. We are traveling from Glencoe that day, also. We plan on traveling via A82, A830 (the Road to the Isles) which I figure is about 2 hours, yet we also hope to make a few stops at Glenfinnan monument (Jacobite rising began here when Prince Charles Edward Stuart raised his standard on the shores of Loch Shiel) & Loch Shiel, and maybe do a quick view of the beach towns of Arisaig and Morar. The Ferry line states you must have a ticket and be ready to board in line at least 20 minutes ahead of time. I'm trying to figure all that in before purchasing my ferry ticket.

Posted by
647 posts

Hello all
With regard to driving time from Glencoe to the ferry at Mallaig, personally I would allow 2 hours with no stops.
Best wishes
Jacqui (Skyegirl)

Posted by
74 posts

crr3bears, sounds like a great plan, we may be following you along the road!