University of Wisconsin–Madison
Abbotsford, July 2018
Innerpeffray Library Tour, July 2018

The 2018 tour group at Innerpeffray Library, Crieff, Scotland.

Librarians’ Tour to Scotland 2019 [Tour is full!]

Dates: May 30 – June 9, 2019 (10 nights)

Locations: Edinburgh, Glasgow, see detailed itinerary.

Cost (per person): $2495* for a double room, $3210* for a single room

Who may participate: Librarians, library workers, students, and everyone who loves libraries! We welcome participation from everyone, not only those affiliated with UW-Madison. This tour is open to adults age 18 and older. This tour is strictly limited to 15 participants.

*Air fare not included, see cost details below for more information.

This tour has filled. A limited waiting list is available, please click on the button to add your name to the waiting list. There is no fee to add your name to the waiting list.

Waiting List

Dates for 2019 don’t work for you? Instead of joining the waiting list, click here to add yourself to the mailing list for future tour information.

Questions? Contact Meredith Lowe.

  • Tour Cost Details

    IMPORTANT NOTE: Please do not purchase non-refundable plane tickets until the tour leader has contacted you with arrangement information.

    The cost for this tour is $2495 per person for a double (twin beds) room or a $3210 per person for a single room. There are a limited number of shared rooms with one larger bed at the $2495 per person price as well.

    The price includes:

    • All breakfasts
    • Five dinners and gratuities
    • Lunch at Abbotsford House (Borders day trip excursion)
    • All lodgings from May 30, checking out on June 9
    • All admission tickets for group tour events (see itinerary)
    • All fares and gratuities for three private coach tours and tickets for most tour attractions (see itinerary)
    • Hop on/Hop off tickets for 1 day in Edinburgh and 1 day in Glasgow


    The price does not include:

    • Air fare to and from Scotland
    • Transit costs from and to the arrival and departure airports in Scotland
    • Meals that are not listed as covered above
    • Beverages containing alcohol are not included for any group meals per UW policy but may be purchased at individual expense
    • Admission and tour fees to any attractions that you may choose to visit during free times


    Registration costs and due dates:

    • The registration fee deposit ($500) is due upon registration. This deposit is non-refundable, except in the event that the University of Wisconsin cancels the tour for any reason at which point the entire amount paid by a participant would be refunded. This fee may be paid by credit card via our online registration system. If paying by check, please call Marlys Kellogg in the registrations department at 608-265-5137 to register by phone.
    • The second payment ($997.50) is due by  March 15, 2019
    • The third payment ($997.50) and single room supplement ($715 if applicable) are due by May 3, 2019
  • Important Information/FAQ

    Q: Who is going on this tour? How many participants are there?

    We welcome any adult who is interested in libraries, but we think that this tour will be particularly interesting for library workers, librarians, those in professions related to libraries, and information school students. In the past, our tour groups have been a blend of working professionals, retired professionals, and Master’s students, as well as their friends, family, partners, and spouses. We welcome participation from everyone, including those affiliated in some way with UW-Madison and those who are not! This tour is not able to welcome children and minors under the age of 18.

    This tour is strictly limited to a maximum of 15 participants.


    Q: Who is leading this tour?

    Meredith Lowe is an outreach specialist in the Information School’s Continuing Education Services office. She has led librarians’ tours to Germany (2011, 2013) and Scotland (2012, 2018).

    Q: What is the itinerary?

    The itinerary for the 2019 tour is still under development. It will likely be similar to the 2018 itinerary.


    Q: Can I have more information about our lodgings?

    Absolutely! We are staying at two locations; one is in Edinburgh, and the other is in Glasgow.

    • Edinburgh: Masson House Hotel & Bistro
      • This hotel is located on the grounds of Pollock Halls of Residence, which is student housing for the University of Edinburgh. Although the property is located on a university student housing campus, this is a fully serviced hotel. This hotel is about a 30 minute walk from the city center.
      • We will be staying at this hotel starting on May 30, checking out on June 5.
    • Glasgow: Hampton by Hilton Glasgow Central, 140 West Campbell Street, Glasgow, G2 4TZ, UK
      • The Hampton by Hilton is located in central Glasgow, within an easy walk or public transit ride from many cultural attractions and shopping.
      • We will be staying at this hotel starting June 5, checking out June 9.


    Q: I would like to share a room, but I don’t have a roommate. Can you help?

    Yes. We will match individual people together as roommates if they request to be matched. UW-Madison iSchool staff may contact you regarding matching. We cannot guarantee roommate matches. If a requested match cannot be made, the requester is responsible for paying the supplemental price of $715 for a single room. Please indicate preferences regarding your roommate match upon registration.

    Roommates will be sharing twin rooms, which have two separate beds.


    Q: I’m really interested in going, but I have not completely decided yet. Can you hold a space for me?

    No, because this is a popular tour. To be fair to everyone, spaces are sold on a first-come, first-served basis.

    If you know that you would like to share a room and have a roommate already identified, you are both encouraged to sign up around the same time – due to the popularity of this tour and the strict limit of 15 participants, space cannot be held or reserved.


    Q: Can I get more information about the day trip excursions?

    Yes! These day trips are being led by Rabbie’s, a fantastic coach tour company that caters to small groups. The drivers are great tour guides and are very knowledgeable about our destinations. We’re using this company to do a day trip from Edinburgh to the Borders, Rosslyn Chapel, and Melrose. We’re also going to do a tour to Loch Ness, Glencoe, and the Highlands from Glasgow. Our third trip is a transfer from Edinburgh to Glasgow, with a stop at Innerpeffray Library, with a TBD stop at another destination that day as well.

    The entry fees for attractions at the Borders, Rosslyn Chapel, Abbotsford House, and Melrose tours are included in your registration fee. There will be a short Loch Ness cruise available on our tour that day that is not included in your registration costs.

    We will have lunch stops and rest stops during these excursions, but please note that your lunch is included in the Borders tour day only. Lunch stops will be available on our other excursion days at your own expense.


    Q: I have a mobility issue or health issue. What can I expect for this trip?

    If you have a mobility or health issue that may affect you on this trip, please contact Meredith Lowe as soon as possible to discuss options. It is extremely helpful to know of any considerations as early as possible so that arrangements can be made for accessible lodgings (if required) or to discuss options for tours in buildings with many stairs, etc.

    This is a walking-intensive tour. Please make a point to discuss all health-related issues with your physician prior to this trip. We will be using a private chartered bus for our day trips; these buses are not wheelchair accessible. Some of our destinations are historic buildings that have limited wheelchair access. We will be walking between library appointments, often up to 30 minutes at a time. While we will be walking at a relatively easy pace, the pace is steady and sometimes you will need to negotiate uneven terrain such as cobblestones and stairs. Once we arrive at our tour destinations on foot, we will be walking around the libraries we’re visiting. There are options we may have to assist you if this sounds difficult; please contact Meredith as soon as possible to discuss if you have questions or concerns. People in a wide range of age and ability have participated in this tour in the past, and planning early is key to having a great time.


    Q: I have special dietary needs. What should I do?

    There is a space on the online registration form to describe any special dietary needs. The tour leader may contact you with questions, in order to arrange dining options for our group meals that accommodate dietary needs. It is generally easy to find vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options, especially in Edinburgh and Glasgow. If you have questions, please contact Meredith Lowe.


    Q: What should I pack?

    Pack as lightly as possible. We will have a charter bus to transport us between Edinburgh and Glasgow, but the bus luggage space is limited. Participants must be able to manage their own luggage.

    The weather in Scotland is notoriously unpredictable, and temperature/precipitation can vary greatly even within a day. Rain is likely during this tour. Bring sturdy, waterproof shoes and rain gear. It’s helpful to plan to dress in layers, as you may be cool in the morning, warm in the afternoon, and cool again in the evening.

    Here are items that past tour participants have found helpful to bring:

    • An electrical plug converter and adapter for USA/Canadian electronic devices
    • A travel-sized white noise machine and/or ear plugs
    • A travel fan
    • Smartphone with international data plan or personal WIFI hotspot (generally it’s easy to find WIFI at our hotels or restaurants/cafes if you want to do that!)
    • Shower poof/scrubbie or washcloth, which is not always provided
    • Travel umbrella and/or packable rain jacket
    • Waterproof shoes


    Q: How should I organize my flights?

    Please do not purchase plane tickets until you hear from the tour leader with travel information.

    The first day of the tour is Thursday, May 30. Please plan to arrive at our lodgings in Edinburgh that day (check in is 2:00pm, there will be an orientation at 3:00). You may choose to fly in and do some private traveling on your own prior to that date, or after the tour concludes. The last day of the tour is Sunday, June 9, which is departure day from our Glasgow hotel. Tour participants are responsible for booking their own travel between the airports and our lodgings. Information about airport transit options are below (please check the transit services’ sites for the most up-to-date information).

    Edinburgh Airport Transit options:

    • Most expensive: take a taxi from the airport to Masson House (approx. 40 minutes);
    • Mid-range expense: Take an Airlink 100 bus (ticket £4.50) from the airport to Waverly Train Station in the city center, and take a taxi from there;
    • Least Expensive: Take an Airlink 100 bus (ticket £4.50) from the airport to Waverly Train Station in the city center, and then transfer to a second bus (Lothian is the main city bus provider, fare for a single ticket is £1.70, buy on bus with exact change). More information about bus routes stopping near Masson House is here (Masson House hotel is on the grounds of Pollock Halls). You may need to walk a few minutes from the nearest bus stop.


    Glasgow Airport Transit Options:

    • Most expensive: Taxi to the airport. This takes 15-20 minutes and will cost about £20-25.
    • Least expensive: Glasgow Airport Express Bus, £8 exact cash on bus or pay with the mTickets app on your smartphone. You would need to walk about 10 minutes (slightly downhill) to the the stop on Waterloo St. at Campbell St.


    Q: What is the cancellation policy?

    • A NON-REFUNDABLE $500 deposit is due upon registration for the tour.
    • Cancellation requests received between December 1 and March 15, 2019: no refund of the $500 deposit; a 50% refund of any registration amount paid past the initial $500 deposit.
    • Cancellation requests received between March 16 and May 3, 2019: No refund of the initial $500 deposit; a 25% refund of any registration amount paid past the initial $500 deposit.
    • Requests received after 12:00 AM CST May 4, 2019: No refund of any registration fees paid.

    In the case of the tour being cancelled due to low participation rates, all registration funds will be refunded, including the $500 deposit.


    Q: Can I earn academic credit for this tour? What about non-credit education?

    For our past tours, we found that earning academic credit was not a popular option for tour participants. We may be able to arrange an independent study credit for UW-Madison iSchool students. If you are interested in attending the tour and earning credit, please contact Meredith Lowe.

    This tour is worth 1.0 CEUs/10 LEUs, or 10 contact hours of non-credit education. CEU/LEUs are not eligible for academic credit.


    Q: Do I have any insurance options included with this tour?

    Yes. All travelers in this group will be enrolled in an insurance plan offered by Cultural Insurance Services International (CISI). CISI includes medical coverage and travel insurance. You can find the CISI informational brochure and claim form here (this is the 2018/19 year plan but no major changes are expected). Please examine the CISI terms and conditions to determine if you will need to purchase supplemental insurance on your own. CISI insurance will only cover you during the dates of May 30 – June 9, 2019. If you are traveling extra days, please explore further insurance options for those days, one option being

    If during the dates of the trip you are currently employed as a state employee in Wisconsin (including University of Wisconsin employees), you are eligible for Europ Assistance and will be automatically enrolled. Europ Assistance coverage only includes medical evacuation and repatriation along with some travel advice.  It will not pay medical bills. Please note that students are not eligible for Europ Assistance unless they are also state or university employees.


    Q: How does the waiting list work?

    The tour is limited to 15 people, and registrations are taken on a first-come, first-served basis. Once we reach that number of registrations, a waiting list is started. The waiting list is limited to 10 people. If one of the original 15 participants cancels their registration, that spot will be offered to a person on the waiting list. Being on the waiting list does not obligate participation in the tour – waitlisted persons may choose to decline the spot. Being on the waitlist does not guarantee a spot on a future tour, but waitlisted persons will be contacted with information about future tours and will be given an opportunity to register early, before registration opens to the general public. If you know that the 2019 tour dates won’t work for you, please consider joining the email list for information about future tour activities.


    Q: Who can I contact with any other questions about this tour?

    Please contact Meredith Lowe, or 608-890-0364

  • Terms and Conditions, Tour Forms