CalMac West Coast Whisky Pass Enhances Scottish Travel

By Nino Kilgore-Marchetti / December 10, 2015

Perhaps one of the most dramatic ways to reach areas where some of the more remote Scottish distilleries are located is by ferry. One operator of this mode of transportation in Scotland, Caledonian MacBrayne (CalMac), is looking to taking advantage of these popular tourism destinations through the recent introduction of the West Coast Whisky Pass.

CalMac said its new West Coast Whisky Pass is designed to offer exclusive promotions and discounts to those who pick one up (£25 per person) from a range of places associated with the ferry company. These exclusive arraignments happen to include some popular distilleries up and down the west coast from Springbank in Campbeltown to Talisker on Skye. Typical of these locations are discounts on tours and merchandise.

West Coast Whisky Pass

Some interesting statistics highlighted by CalMac showcase how this pass could be a nice money maker for them. For example, 20% of foreign visitors to Scotland included seeing at least one distillery as part of their travel plans. This goes up even further when it is specifically German tourists (43%), and overall “1.1 million visits were recorded to distilleries in Scotland during 2013, an increase of more than 10% on the previous year.”

For those seeking a little bit of guidance on which distilleries to visit where by ferry, what’s also being promoted is something known as Whisky Hopscotch Trails. These are essentially a range of “island hopping tickets” which let you travel more at your own pace.

“Whisky tourism is of growing importance and with our ferry routes covering three of the five main producing areas – Campbeltown, Islay and Highlands – we are ideally placed to help make visits as memorable as possible,” said Maggie Maguire, CalMac’s UK Tourism Development Manager, in a statement. “Our Whisky Hopscotch Trail opens up some of our best known but remotest distilleries to whisky lovers through ferry travel and combining the Whisky Pass adds a new dimension to visitors’ experience.”


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