The timetables below are now confirmed, and will be published on the CalMac site on Thursday. Bookings will open at 7am on Friday.
Just to recap on the process this year –
Draft winter timetables would normally be shared with ferry committees in April or thereabouts. This year, we were not provided with drafts until September. This was due to delays making arrangements to mitigate for the winter closures planned for Uig. Irrespective of that, we could and should have been provided with proposals months earlier. This is the first winter with a two vessel service; the first time we have had three distinct winter timetables, and the first non-Covid year with extended 50/20 cycle times for the our major vessel. With such complex changes, we should have been consulted far earlier.
Frustration over the delay has been compounded by unintentionally misleading information being given to passengers. Incorrect information was provided to CalMac front-line staff and posted on the CalMac website, suggesting it was the Mull and Iona Ferry Committee who were responsible for the delay. That is absolutely not correct.
There remain many problems with these timetables, particularly periods when the Loch Frisa is operating solo. Please be particularly aware of the connections that we have highlighted. Some train connections are as short as 9 minutes. In previous years such short connections would not have been permitted to be published.
Please also bear in mind that the dates when each of the three timetables apply may be subject to change, either because of dry-docking delays or breakdowns elsewhere in the network. If (when we’ve got one) our major vessel is removed to serve another island with a breakdown, the service will fall back to the Loch Frisa solo timetable.