Transport Scotland and CalMac are preparing for next summer, on the assumption that social distancing measures will still be in place. This means that we won’t get our ‘normal’ summer timetable, because of the extra time needed to clean the vessel between sailings.
Below is the timetable that will be in place for the Oban-Craignure service. It is a little better than the ‘post lockdown’ timetable we adopted late this summer, which was affected by a decision made during lockdown not to recruit seasonal summer staff.
Our minor vessel routes (Tobermory – Kilchoan, Lochaline – Fishnish and Fionnphort-Iona) will follow the normal summer timetable (with adjustments on the Fionnphort-Iona service to co-ordinate with the Craignure ferry) .
Whether the passenger capacity of the major ferries will still be reduced next summer depends on how quickly social distancing rules can be relaxed. The working assumption is that passenger capacities will remain restricted. The MV Isle of Mull has a ‘Covid-safe’ capacity of 213, a figure that in a normal summer would be exceeded on several sailings each day. If travel restrictions are fully lifted therefore, there may be insufficient capacity to meet demand – unless social distancing rules or vessel capacities are able to change to match.
The Coruisk will carry passengers in their cars as she did this summer. Her sailings are in grey.