UPDATES – tours suspended until 31 Jan
COVID-19 – Get the latest Covid information and our simple 2021/22 cancellation and rebooking policy
Frequently Asked Questions
We realise you might have one or two questions - most of these are probably answered below. If you still have queries please contact us.
Where do your tours leave from?
All scheduled tours depart from Bus Stand ZE, Waterloo Place, Edinburgh, EH1 3BQ. See the departure stance, map and more details. Please arrive at least 15 minutes before your tour departs. Due to waiting restrictions we cannot delay departure times. It’s also only fair to those customers who have arrived on time that we leave on time.
What happens if I am late or miss the tour?
Refunds will not be issued to customers who are late / miss the tour / cannot find the departure point. See our full Terms of Service.
Do you pick up from my accommodation?
We don’t pick-up from accommodation. Driving around the city centre in the morning wastes your valuable tour time as well as being environmentally unfriendly. See above for details of our departure point.
Where does the tour return to?
All scheduled tours return to Bus Stand ZE, Waterloo Place, Edinburgh, EH1 3BQ.
What size are your buses?
All of our buses have an average group size of 8 passengers. See our fleet of vehicles.
Can I book a window seat?
Seats are allocated on a first come-first served basis. All our buses are custom-built for sightseeing and all seats have good visibility.
Are there toilets on the bus?
No but we make regular comfort stops throughout the day.
Is lunch included in the price?
No but we stop at lunchtime in appropriate locations where you will be able to buy lunch or eat your own picnic. We believe in giving you the freedom to choose where and what you eat. During our tours we stop in small, quaint towns and villages where you can choose between cafes, pubs, bakeries or restaurants; there is something to suit every budget.
Are entry fees to attractions included in the price?
Admission fees to castles, distilleries, boat trips etc are not included in the price. Please see our individual tour pages for details on entry fees.
Can I bring my luggage?
Yes, of course, and we have a very generous luggage allowance of 30 kg per person! Most hotels and guesthouses will store luggage for you and there is also a left luggage facility at Waverley railway station (5 minutes walk from our pick-up point on Waterloo Place). Luggage is carried free of charge but at the passenger’s own risk.
Do you take children under 5 years?
Sorry, we do not carry children under 5 years on our scheduled tours.
Should I tip the driver/guide?
If you’ve had a great experience and you feel your driver/guide deserves a gratuity it will be accepted with thanks.
Whats should I wear?
We believe in giving you as much time off the bus as possible, and providing opportunities for our wee ‘walk and talks’, so recommend you bring suitable clothing and footwear (flat shoes that are comfortable to walk in) for your tour.
What will the weather be like?
Typically Scottish… but the weather isn’t as bad as you might think – the Atlantic Gulf Stream makes the climate very temperate. Check the BBC forecast.
What language are the tours in?
Clear spoken English. We also have translated guidebooks in Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Mandarin and Russian on every bus.
What is the age range on your tours?
All ages are welcome (minimum age 5 years) but the majority of our customers are between 20-70 years old.
How far in advance should I book?
We are happy to accept bookings on the day of departure (subject to availability) but to avoid disappointment it is always best to book as far in advance as possible, especially for overnight tours.
What is your cancellation and refund policy?
Should I take out travel insurance?
We highly recommend you take out travel insurance to cover death, personal injury, medical expenses, repatriation expenses, loss of or damage to luggage and contents of same and expenses associated with cancellation or curtailment of a tour.
Where will I stay on an overnight tour?
At the time of booking choose from hostel (£20 to £30 per person, per night), B&B single (£50 to £90 per person, per night), en-suite B&B double/twin (£100 to £150 per room, per night – 2 sharing), or hotel (£150 to £200+ per room, per night – 2 sharing). We use the same trusted accommodation providers to ensure consistently high standards within your selected category. Acccommodation is pre-booked by Heart of Scotland Tours and you pay card or cash at checkout. Due to the nature of accommodation in the Highlands we use several providers and it is not possible to specifically name your accommodation before tour departure. Accommodation in rural areas such as Skye can sometimes be located 10-15 minutes walk from the town centre. Taxis are available if necessary.
How do I pay for accommodation on overnight tours?
Your driver guide will drop you off at your accommodation in the evening and collect you there the next morning. Some Bed & Breakfasts only accept cash and we recommend you always carry cash when travelling in rural Scotland. Please pay your accommodation directly when you check out.
What can I expect from a Hostel?
A Hostel is budget accommodation which usually consists of bunk beds in a dormitory. A mixed dormitory is standard but single sex dormitories are sometimes available. Hostels have cooking facilities. Bed linen is provided but you should bring your own towel or rent on-site. Typical cost £20 to £30 per person, per night.
What can I expect from a Bed & Breakfast/Guest House?
A Bed & Breakfast (B&B) is traditional holiday accommodation within a private home. Guests are accommodated in bedrooms with private en suite bathrooms. Towels and bed linen are provided. Breakfast is included in the price, is served in a communal dining room and usually consists of a cooked breakfast (bacon, eggs, etc) or a ‘continental’ alternative (croissants, cereals, etc). There are no cooking facilities (hostels can provide self-catering facilities). Towels and bed linen are provided. Typical cost £100 to £150 per room, per night (2 sharing).
What can I expect from a Hotel?
Hotels guests are always accommodated in bedrooms with private en suite bathrooms. There will be a bar and restaurant available for guests. Typical cost £150 to £200+ per room, per night (2 sharing) depending on star rating and time of the year.
What room types are available in Bed & Breakfasts and Hotels?
Single room = 1 single bed and sleeps 1 person
Double room = 1 double bed and sleeps 2 people
Twin room = 2 single beds and sleeps 2 people
Family room for 3 people = 1 double bed and 1 single bed
Family room for 4 people = 1 double bed and 2 single beds
Single rooms are often in short supply. Some Bed & Breakfasts will rent a double or twin room for single occupancy with a supplement.