Coronavirus (Covid19)

A message from Martin Balcombe

Tues 12-Jan 2021 – 17:30

We hope that you have all had a good break over the Christmas period, are coping with the situation wherever you are and that you and your loved ones are keeping safe and well.

Here at Caledonian Discovery, some of us are back at work and we are cautiously looking ahead to the 2021 season. Last year was of course very difficult. We had to cancel all our cruises and were grateful to our guests for their patience and understanding. Most people were able to transfer their bookings and this was a significant help.

Things are hard for many people at the moment, both in the UK and indeed worldwide. With the new Covid variant and the increase in cases, we are patiently waiting for better times. However, with the vaccinations now being rolled out, we are maintaining our cautious optimism for the 2021 season and the future. We realise that it will take quite a while for things to come back to something more like normal, but we are making plans and deciding how best to operate responsibly this year. We don’t know how the situation will be, leading up to the planned season start in April, but we will be keeping an eye on progress and working to guidelines. We will confirm cruises at least 4 weeks before they are due to start and at that time, we will also publish details of some straightforward practical measures we will take to allow you to come on your holiday safely. We will of course, also need to be ready to respond to last minute changes in guidelines.

We feel privileged to live and work here in the Scottish Highlands where we have space to breathe and freedom to roam. Our holidays have always been designed to make the most of the wonderful outdoor environment and we are looking forward to sharing this with our guests again. We are never far from the next canal lock or stopping place and people always have good options for going ashore. This could be for a wee amble, to get involved in watersports or to stride out on a longer walk or bike ride. These crucial aspects of our holidays will have very few changes.

We are fortunate that our small group size and style of holiday allow us to make Covid-safe adjustments to our operation. We are developing a thorough protocol designed to reduce risks to guests and crew as much as possible. This will affect mealtimes and use of the communal indoor spaces. However, we are confident that this will be acceptable to our guests from the point of view of minimal disruption as well as personal safety.

We published amended Terms and Conditions during 2020 to give the flexibility that was needed, and these will still apply to the bookings transferred from 2020. We want to keep some significant booking flexibility from now on for the 2021 cruises and have re-written our Terms and Conditions with this in mind.

We hope you will be able to join us in the coming year and look forward to welcoming you onto one of our holidays soon.

If you would like any more information, please do get in touch. Check our Contact Us page to see how restrictions are affecting our office opening times for e-mails and phone calls.