All dollar amounts ($) in Canadian Dollar
GBP = Great British Pound (on average, £1 = $1.76 CAD)
Below are the expenses for a comfortable 7-day budget-conscious trip for two through the Scottish Highlands. Our trip was in mid-September, which is still considered “High Season” in Scotland.
Travelling to Scotland:
Roundtrip Flight: $1349.51 = $674.75 per person (pp) total with checked baggage and fees included.
This includes $413.14 fee to add an extra day to our trip, which accounts for $206.57 each. If we hadn’t added the extra day, the roundtrip flight would have cost us only $475 each!
We flew with West Jet and used Hopper to determine the best date to book
Travelling within Scotland:
Car rental: $434.16 = $217.08 pp (automatic drive)
We rented with SIXT. $38.99 was the reservation fee and $147.80 was a car upgrade. The car rental itself was $247.37.
Gas: $80.81 + $82.31 = $163.12 total ($81.56 pp)
Our car was pretty stellar on gas. We only had to fill up twice with our road trip totalling 803 miles – that’s 1,292 km!
Road tolls: $0 (the £2 fee to enter the Glasgow airport was included in our Uber fare)
Public Transit: £1.70 each (single ticket in Glasgow)
Car share/taxi: $29.88 to Glasgow airport from the West End. We also spent $17.63 total going back and forth from our hotel and car rental in Glasgow.
Airport Bus: £8 each (one way ticket)
Glasgow – first night: $167.12 = $83.56 pp
Glencoe: $108.55 = $54.27 pp
Isle of Skye: $250.97 = $62.74 pp per night
Loch Ness: $226.46 = $113.23 pp
Edinburgh: $70.87 = $35.44 pp
Glasgow – last night: $104.79 = $52.39 pp
Average cost: $132.68 per night, or $66.34 per night per person
Groceries: $34.23 + 20.23 + 15.41 = $69.87, or about $5 pp per day
Eating out: $374.86 total, or $26.77 pp per day
Food Costs Day-by-day:
Amounts shown are the total bill for two people. Dinner prices usually include a drink each.
Day 1 – Glagsow:
- Breakfast at the Papercup: $23.62
- Lunch at Inn Deep: $32.58
- Dinner at Tennents Bar: $22.01
Day 2 – Glasgow to Glencoe:
- Breakfast at hotel (included with accommodation)
- Lunch at the Real Food Cafe: £7.10
- Dinner at Clachaig Inn: £23.90
Day 3 – Glencoe to Portree:
- Breakfast at Clachaig Inn (included with accommodation)
- Packed lunch from Clachaig Inn: £13.90
- Snack at the Plockton Hotel: £9.50
- Dinner at hostel (groceries)
Day 4 – Portree:
- Lunch at the Oyster Shed: $24.53
- Breakfast and dinner at hostel (groceries)
Day 5 – Portree to Foyers:
- Breakfast and lunch (groceries)
- Dinner at pub: $53.33
Day 6 – Foyers to Edinburgh:
- Breakfast at B&B (included with accommodation)
- Coffee break at Cafe Calluna: $13.22
- Dinner at Nobles Cafe Bar: $84.07
Day 7 – Edinburgh to Glasgow:
- Breakfast at AirBnB (groceries)
- Coffee break at Pep & Fodder: $11.17
- Lunch at John Lewis: $20.20
- Dinner at Hurtlet Carvery: $18.04
Average cost of budget-conscious food and drink in Scotland observed during our trip:
Average cost of a coffee: £2
Average cost of a pint: £4
Average cost of a prepackaged sandwich: £3.50
- Entrance to Urquhart Castle: $31.53 = $15.76 pp
- Parking at the Fairy Pools (like an admission fee): £5
Cash When Travelling
I drew out about $180 CAD cash in GPB for the trip and came home with one £20 bill left. Having cash was a necessity as some of the best places do not accept card! (such as the Pier Hotel in Portree – our favourite bar of the trip for live music!)
When I went to the bank to draw out GBP a day before we were to leave on our trip, my bank said I needed to order foreign currency a week in advance. They gave me what they had on hand to get me started, but I had to draw out more in Scotland when we were on the Isle of Skye. When I drew out half at the ATM machine at the Co-op Food store in Portree, I was charged £1.50 by the ATM and $5 from my bank. So, my advice is to order your GBP in advance!
International Roaming with TELUS: $13.56 per day ($6.78 each)
We didn’t need it in Glasgow due to wifi offered everywhere, but did use it for the other 5 days of our trip ($67.80). Having data roaming was very convenient as we could use Google Maps, Yelp, and look up information as needed. However, cellphone reception is very poor in Scotland – even in the suburbs of Glasgow, so having data was not as useful as it could have been.
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