The trip back to Glasgow International Airport by ferry and rental car is interesting to say the least.
Tips for taking the ferry back from Islay to the mainland:
- Book ahead! There is only one company running ferries. Calmac, if you can book it on their website your on the boat.
- Check the Calmac apps for iPhone and Android for updates on sailing times. The morning we would sail the winds were high and the afternoon ferry got cancelled. So even if you have a ticket, check for updates.
- Be on time to check in.
- Bring Cash for paying stuff on the ferry!!
- Allow for some time to get stuck in traffic around Glasgow.
- Program the correct International Airport! Glasgow has two!
- Don’t get overly frustrated with the absolute jungle of miss-placed signs which are intended, but don’t, guide you towards the rental car drop-off point.
- If you had any expectations of Glasgow GLA airport of being any good …. eh … well … expect little.
- If you do bring sample bottles with you well below the total allowable limit, do make sure they fit into the WEE airport security zip-bag. You are only allowed one!
Anyways, we had had our last breakfast. We had packed everything. We had payed our bill at the Lochside Hotel in Bowmore. What an absolute joy to have stayed there! Please find the three blogs I wrote on this hotel for stories.
A Dutch Couple and their little baby were on the afternoon Ferry that got cancelled. They told us they would try get on the morning ferry. I wont say if they made it on board. Call it a cliffhanger! Keep reading 😉
We shot a lot of movies driving to the ferry and to the airport. They can become rather boring but it does give people an idea of how this all works.
Ones you get to the car sorting area, you give of your ticket and get appointed a lane. There is the same amount of space on the parking area as on the ferry. Handy buggars those Scots!
It was a wee bit windy. Ok ok, we got almost blown of the friggin dock!
The signal was given an we could park our cat on the ferry. Ones on board you park your car and get topside. Have a coffee. A spot of breakfast.
We went outside to see all the preparations. One last look at Port Ellen Distillery.
And we were off!
We were told to get inside. Good thing to because if we hadn’t been blown of by the wind, we would have by the first seas that hit the bow. So we moved to the back of the ship and just enjoyed the view.
The view in this “storm” was amazing! High waves were pounding the ships and other ships as well! Wonderful! This is how a trip to Scotland should end! With rain and wind!
We attemped to sit inside while the ship was pounding and rolling. I hurried back out because i apparently don’t have sea legs. On my two feet I was able to keep the horizon level 😉
The trip got better as we sailed along the wind instead of beating into it. That meant time for coffee. If you think you can pay with a bankcard or anything like that, your mistaken. You remember those 1999 credit-card swipe-things where you sign the slip at the end. They still use those! Like OMG! So bring Cash!
We spoke to Eilidh from the hotel. She was on her way to Glasgow for a visit. Then we spotted the Dutch Couple and their baby! They had made it! Good for them!
We departed from the ferry. Turn on our Tom Tom navigation and at the first turn it told us to go right! Seriously!? I’m stubborn like this, we came from the left on our way to Kennacraig, the signs pointed Glasgow as being to the left, so we turned left. The first 15 minutes our friends Tom and Tom kept telling us to turn around. We thought it would pass. It didn’t! What was wrong with this thing? We had had enough of this. So the co-driver went into the menus and found the “error”. It was set on “avoid highways”! How did that happen!! Anyways, with that setting set Tom and Tom found the correct ways too!
Tip: if you are bringing your wife’s navigation, check the friggin settings!!
The drive back was rainy! Like I mean it rained alot! We loved it! This was th Scotland how we heard about it! Lakes, rocks, forests, mountains and rain! The locals kept overtaking us, but we were going for safe on those twisting and turning roads! We had time.
In fact we had more time that we thought it would take according to Tom and Tom! What now!? Glasgow only has the one airport right!? We looked at each other questioning our geography knowledge. Lets as google! Darn! No signal! In the end we located in the “points of interest” section two airports. We selected the GLA initials and then the travel time made sense again!
Ones at the airport we sorta were like totally not guided to the car rental drop off point. We parked. The car was checked and everything was ok. Tip! If you are using the option of paying in advance for Hertz fillings her up, estimate if you are actually bringing the car back empty. We had a quarter tank left. It was ok. In this airport jungle I was happy to have found Hertz in the first place.
We had checked in with out KLM app before we left Islay. That smart! We needed those plastic bags for airport security. I asked two! No sir, you are only allowed one bag. Dude! That’s not going to fit my 10 sample bottles! Help!! So we split the bottles and got through security ok.
Tip! You are allowed a certain amount of millilitres, in containers or a maximum size. What you don’t read that it has to fit in to that wee plastic zipbag!
The Glasgow airport is just that.
So after security we got a beer and something to eat, got on board, took off, landed and got greeted by my friends Wife and kids. The train brought us home! The Islay trip had come to an end.
It was good! Thank you Fjo!! Love you man!