2021 May/June in Scotland/Ireland

Keacc

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jul 14, 2004
Congrats to you! Our 40th is also in 2021. But we are being very cautious and have made no plans yet. I will live my anniversary through your wonderfully planned trip. Love Ireland and Scotland so please do a trip report. I would love to read it. Thinking someday when all of this is behind us we'll be back!
When we booked this trip, we thought COVID would have come and gone by then. We still hope that travel restrictions open up by then. We can't afford to quarantine for 2 weeks in Scotland before the tour. Vaccinations are starting to be available in the USA. We hope to get them as soon as possible. Even if we get the vaccine, we still don't know when restrictions may be lifted for us. We just have to wait and hope for the best.
 

dolewhipdreams

Counting days until my next Dole Whip
Joined
Feb 24, 2017
My favorite meal in Edinburgh was at Oink. They only serve one thing - a pulled pork sandwich - but it is incredible. You choose the stuffing and sauce (my recommendation is the sage and onion stuffing with apple sauce) and the size. They roast an entire pig each day and serve it until it's gone. They've got a few locations in Edinburgh. We tried the one on Victoria Street (lots of stuff for Harry Potter fans here) and it was fantastic. I recommend a side of red onion and cheddar chips - a flavor that is (shamefully) not available in the US. They are only open for lunch, so it may be a spot to consider for the day when you are on your own before joining your tour group.

If you're an active type and want a little adventure while in Edinburgh, a trip up Arthur's Seat would be a fantastic addition. I actually just wrote a blog post about why it's a great part of an Edinburgh itinerary: http://expeditioneddy.com/why-you-should-climb-arthurs-seat-in-edinburgh/
 

Keacc

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jul 14, 2004
Well, we just change our tour from the first 2 weeks in June to the first 2 weeks in July in hope that restrictions will be less.
 

Keacc

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jul 14, 2004
Well, we just switched our trip to 2022. A real bummer. The tour was switched at the same price. American Airlines was not so easy to work with. They give us full credit that we have to use before December 31, 2021 ($3,000). If we take any flight like a $100 trip, the rest of that credit will be valid for 2022. Does this really make any sense? Oh well, we will do that rather tanh lose the credit.
 

BadPinkTink

DIS Veteran
Joined
Mar 13, 2015
Well, we just switched our trip to 2022. A real bummer. The tour was switched at the same price. American Airlines was not so easy to work with. They give us full credit that we have to use before December 31, 2021 ($3,000). If we take any flight like a $100 trip, the rest of that credit will be valid for 2022. Does this really make any sense? Oh well, we will do that rather tanh lose the credit.
I think you are very wise to move to 2022. In Ireland we are still in lockdown, all non essential business closed, schools closed and we have a 5km limit for none essential travel and exercise. It looks like things will stay like this until the end of February. St Patricks Day March 17 has been cancelled for the second year in a row. Most are saying it will be Easter before restrictions will start to be eased.
 

Tink-osophy

Just chatting
Joined
May 17, 2015
We live in the USA and will be celebrating our 40th anniversary in 2021. I just booked a 14 day tour of Scotland/Ireland for May 29th thru June 11th of 2021. Am I crazy for booking this?
It sounds like an amazing trip, even though you have to wait a little longer, now. It, also, sounds very busy, so make time to stop and smell the roses! Congratulations on your anniversary. Happy travels!

The only crazy part is not booking to come to Wales. We have the best castles, culture and coastline in the UK.
It drives me potty when I chat to American guests art Disney and they say they want to visit England, come to Wales as we keep a welcome in the hillside for everyone!
I think a lot of Americans just aren't (very) familiar with the existence of Wales. It seems mostly to be about London, Scotland and Ireland.

(Plus, quite a few see England and the UK as one and the same and, also, don't necessarily realise the distinction between Northern Ireland the the Republic.)

...But that's not dissimilar to many Brits focusing on NYC, Florida, Vegas and California.

Wales is a gem, though.
 
  • Hubie

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Aug 3, 2016
    I think you did a wise thing to wait. We want to return to Scotland and will likely hold off until the Spring of 2022. Sorry to hear about your difficult dealings with American Airlines. We had to cancel our May 2020 Disney Trans-Atlantic Cruise, but both Delta and Norwegian Air came through with full refunds for our flight to Miami and return from Barcelona.
     

    Douglas Dubh

    True Fiscal Conservative
    Joined
    Nov 13, 1999
    I’m hoping to do England, Scotland, and Wales in spring of 2022. What’s the best time to go? Hoping for a sweet spot when things are open but crowds are low. Are most schools in session in May?
     

    BadPinkTink

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Mar 13, 2015
    I’m hoping to do England, Scotland, and Wales in spring of 2022. What’s the best time to go? Hoping for a sweet spot when things are open but crowds are low. Are most schools in session in May?
    the middle of May is a good time, both weather wise and crowd wise. Just be careful about the start of May and end of May. Usally the first weekend in May and the first weekend in June are whats called Bank Holiday weekends, where the Monday is a public holiday. These weekends would be like Labour Day weekend in USA and are very big family holiday times when UK and Irish families holiday domestically.

    Irish primary schools usually end at the start of June and Irish highschools / secondary schools usually end at the end of June.

    UK schools usually end at the start of July.

    HOWEVER

    All that was before Covid. It is far too soon to start planning or predicting what 2022 will be like. The UK and Irish hospitality and tourist industry is basically shut down at the moment. I would not even research tourist attractions, places to visits, hotels, restaurants right now, as huge numbers will never reopen. Non essential business in both countries are struggling to survive and pay their bills for January 2021, so no one is even close to thinking about 2022.

    The same with school and term times. Right now most schools for all ages are closed in both UK and Ireland and the majority of children in both countries have home schooling / online learning. The state exams in both countries have not been decided yet and the 2020 / 2021 academic year in both countries is just as disrupted as March to summer 2020 was. Again its way to soon to try to predict what the academic year 2021 / 2022 will be like. The Educuation Departments in both countries have not even decided about Spring Break 2021 yet.

    Basically you need to get your head around that the old way of planning European vacations 18 to 20 months out is gone for good. By all means, put the money aside, but the new post Covid way of planning vacations is that even 6 months in advance is too far out. Forget about planning May 2022 for now and come back about September 2021 and ask us Europeans for an update.
     
  • Kate_45

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Feb 27, 2017
    May is a great time of year in terms of kids being in school.
    Just to clarify above the first Monday in may is a bank holiday, which means one day off and people enjoy the long weekend. The last Monday in may is also a bank holiday (Whitsun), but that week is a whole week off for schools in England and Wales. Private schools in England and Wales finish end of June but most schools break up for the summer holidays mid July. So June is also a nice month to visit.

    Scotland school holidays are slightly different. They officially only have the bank holiday at the start of may, often with a training day for staff to make the weekend longer. However as some companies give the English bank holiday so some schools choose to make that date a training day instead. They break up for the summer just before the end of June and return mid August (English and Welsh schools return at the start of September).

    When you're further along with your plans you can always look up exact dates in the places you're visiting just to be sure, but this is a good general rule.
     



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