This page is designed to answer any questions you may have about our small group tour holidays. If you cannot find the information you are looking for then please call our office on +44 (0) 131 610 1210 or email us at enquiries@absoluteescapes.com and we will be more than happy to assist you.

What is a Small Group Tour?

Choosing Your Small Group Tour

Booking Your Small Group Tour

Package Inclusions

Accommodation & Meals

What is a Small Group Tour?

What is a small group tour?

On a small group tour, you will travel around the country accompanied by a knowledgeable guide who will show you the best scenery and attractions each area has to offer, giving invaluable insight into the places you explore. By day you will sightsee as part of a group and in the evening you will have free time to explore the town where you are staying and head out for dinner.

A small group tour allows you to get off the beaten track and explore some of the best destinations in the UK without worrying about the stress of driving and planning your day.

How many people will I be travelling with?

Each tour is limited to 16 people.

What type of vehicle will I travel in?

You will travel in a comfortable 16-seater mini-coach. These are equipped with air conditioning and also charging points so you can keep your phone and camera charged and ready to take some wonderful photos.

The small size of the coaches means that you can reach more remote areas which are inaccessible to larger coaches.

How much luggage can I take?

The luggage allowance for small group tours is 1 x 14kg piece of luggage as well as one small piece of hand luggage that can be taken on the mini-coach. If you need advice on storing luggage while on your tour just let us know and we will be happy to advise on this.

How much flexibility is there on the tour?

We want you to get out and about as much as possible and there will be plenty of time at each stop to take photos and explore. While there is a set itinerary you will follow each day, do let your guide know if you have any special interests and they may be able to accommodate these depending on your group. The route you take may also be adapted according to the weather conditions in order to make the most of the day.

Are children allowed on small group tours?

Children over the age of 5 are welcome on our group tours. Under 18s should be accompanied by an adult.

Can we book a whole bus for ourselves?

If you would prefer to have a private vehicle and guide we would recommend taking a look at our private guided tours. We can offer any of our self-drive itineraries as a private guided tour or work with you to design an itinerary specially tailored to you.

Can I combine a small group tour with another of your holidays?

All of our holidays are completely tailored to your requirements. Please do just let us know if you would like to combine any of our holidays and we will work with you to create an itinerary tailor-made to you. Many people enjoy adding one or two days to explore at the end of their small group tour.


Choosing your Small Group Tour

Why choose a small group tour with Absolute Escapes?

Our first-hand knowledge and meticulous planning allow us to create memorable holidays exploring some of the best the UK has to offer. You can rest easy knowing that we have researched the very best experiences for your holiday and thought of every little detail.

Don’t just take our word for it though, have a read of some of our most recent customer reviews to see how some of our past clients enjoyed their holiday.

When is the best time to visit the UK?

The weather varies considerably throughout the UK and according to the time of year. March and April are best for spring flowers, and views of snow-topped mountains. May and June are usually the driest and sunniest months. The days are at their longest towards mid-summer so you can make the most of long, bright evenings to explore. July and August are the warmest months, though usually wetter. September often brings a period of settled weather, and autumnal colours in September and October can be quite spectacular.

July and August are when UK school summer holidays take place, which in many locations makes them the busiest months. However, in recent years May has been by far the busiest period in many Scottish locations.

When are the tours available?

Availability varies throughout the year so do get in touch with us to find out about availability for a specific tour.

How long are your small group tours?

Our small group tours are usually for a minimum of 3 nights. Additional sightseeing days can be added to both the start and end of your tour.


Booking Your Small Group Tour

How do I enquire for and book my small group tour?

We recommend having a look over the itineraries on our website to gather some inspiration and then getting in touch via our enquiry form or by giving us a call to discuss your holiday.

Our travel experts will work with you to create an individualised itinerary taking into consideration the time you have available, your budget and the places you would most like to discover and explore. We will then send you a proposal and booking code for your holiday.

If you would like to go ahead and book we simply require a deposit of 20% of the total cost of your holiday. We will then proceed with making all of the arrangements for your holiday.

How do I pay for my holiday?

Once you have sent us an enquiry you will receive a full proposal by email. This will contain the price, inclusions, and full details on how to pay for your booking. We accept the following payment methods:

1. Bank Transfer – Our account details will be included in your proposal. We ask you to make payment in British pounds sterling (£). If your bank charges you for this service we do ask you to ensure that you settle these charges directly with them.

2. Credit or Debit Card – We accept the following credit or debit cards: Switch/Maestro; Visa; Master/Eurocard. We do not accept payment by Amex.

3. Cheque – Please make cheques payable to “Absolute Escapes Ltd.” Cheques must be made in British pounds sterling (£).

How far in advance do I need to book my holiday?

We generally require at least one month’s notice in order to book a holiday. The further in advance you are able to book your holiday the more likely it is that we will be able to secure you our top choices of accommodation, so we recommend booking as early as you are able.

If you are looking to travel at peak times such as May or during school holidays, please do get in touch as far in advance as possible.

When will I receive the information pack for my holiday?

We will send your information pack which will include details of your accommodation to you by post 2 – 3 weeks after you have made your final payment. We will also send you a copy of all of the essential documents for your holiday by email. If your booking with us is part of a larger holiday and you will leave home before this date, please let us know and we will do our best to accommodate. We can also arrange for your pack to be sent to your first night’s accommodation.

Is my money safe?

In accordance with UK Government regulations your financial security is guaranteed when you book with Absolute Escapes Ltd. The Association of Bonded Travel Organisers Trust Limited (ABTOT) provides financial protection under The Package Travel and Linked Travel Arrangements Regulations 2018 for Absolute Escapes Ltd (membership number 5443). In the unlikely event of our insolvency protection is provided for all money that has been paid for non-flight packages.

ABTOT cover provides for a refund in the event you have not yet travelled or repatriation if you are abroad. Please note that bookings made outside the EEA are only protected by ABTOT when purchased directly with Absolute Escapes Ltd.

In the unlikely event that you require assistance whilst abroad due to our financial failure, please call the ABTOT 24/7 helpline on 01702 811397 and advise you are a customer of an ABTOT protected travel company. Further details can be found on the ABTOT website.

Do I require travel insurance?

We highly recommend that you take out holiday insurance to cover cancellation, personal accident, illness and loss or theft of personal possessions and/or money.

Can I change the dates of my holiday after I have booked?

It is usually possible to change your start date up to 8 weeks before the start of your holiday although it is not advisable. We charge an administration fee of £50.00 to cover the work involved in cancelling and re-booking your accommodation. Requests for changes made less than 8 weeks before the start of your holiday will be treated as a cancellation of your original booking, and our usual booking conditions will apply.

What happens if I have to cancel my holiday?

If you have to cancel your holiday please inform us by email or letter. The date from which we receive your email or letter is the date from which cancellation fees will be calculated. You can find our cancellation policy on our Booking Conditions page.


Package Inclusions

What’s included in the package price?

As your package is tailored to you, inclusions will vary. However, our Small Group Tour packages usually include:

  • Accommodation with breakfast included
  • Multi-day tour by luxury mini-coach with knowledgeable driver-guide
  • An information pack containing daily itinerary, accommodation details, restaurant and sightseeing recommendations
  • 24-hour contact number in case you require any assistance
  • Touring map and leaflets for local attractions
  • Full financial protection

Are tickets to attractions included in the package?

Entry to visitor attractions is not included in your package. You will pay for access into sites such as castles and museums as you arrive and many of them offer a discount for tour participants. This allows flexibility in the sites that you visit each day and also allows your guide to adapt the tour if necessary. It also means that you can choose not to enter any attractions if you prefer to explore the local area instead.

What is not included in the package price?

  • Travel insurance
  • Lunches and evening meals

Can you book flights or train travel for me?

We are more than happy to advise you of the best routes, however, we do not arrange flights or train travel.


Accommodation & Meals

What type of accommodation do you offer?

We know that after a busy day of sightseeing an exceptional place to stay makes all the difference. We are proud to work with a fantastic range of B&Bs, Guest Houses and Hotels, a number of which we have worked with for many years. In each of the accommodations we use, we look for hands-on owners whose dedication to a high-quality client experience rivals our own.

Each accommodation included in your itinerary is hand-picked based on your individual requirements and many are off the beaten track in superb locations. In the cities, we work with slightly larger hotels in order to ensure a high-quality experience for our guests where a central location is often a priority.

To simplify the booking process, we offer two accommodation categories:

  • Budget – 3* B&Bs & Guest Houses
  • Standard – 4* Guest Houses & 3* Hotels

If you wish to combine these categories or perhaps upgrade for a special occasion let us know in your enquiry and we would be delighted to assist you.

How do you choose my accommodation?

Our team of experts are dedicated to seeking out the highest quality accommodation available in the UK and we only book you into places where we would be excited to stay ourselves. Over the years we have built up a fantastic knowledge of the best places to stay and a great relationship with many accommodations throughout the UK. We look for high standards of personal service, attention to detail and excellent food and many of the places we use have hands-on owners, who ensure our guests are extremely well looked after.

Can you tell me the names of the accommodation you use?

As we prefer to handpick each of your accommodations based on your individual requirements and availability at the time of booking, we cannot say prior to booking which accommodation you will be staying in. We would be delighted to send some examples of the accommodation we use to give you an overview of the quality on offer – do just ask us! As soon as your holiday is confirmed we can also send a full list of your accommodation.

Will my accommodation be en-suite?

Yes, we always book en-suite rooms on our small group tours.

What meals are provided?

Breakfast is always included, and will generally consist of sausage, bacon, eggs etc. Cereals, fruit, toast, and tea or coffee will also be available. Lunch and dinner are not included, however your personalised itinerary will include recommendations on the best pubs and restaurants to eat and drink in each evening.

Can you cater for my dietary requirements?

Please tell us of your requirements when booking. It is almost always possible to accommodate dietary requirements, but please check with us first before booking.

Small Group Tours

Highland Explorer: Skye & Far North

From £1025pp

Small Group Tours
Duration 7 Nights
  • Discover the dramatic wild scenery of the famous Isle of Skye
  • Enjoy the majestic peaks, forests and lochs of the Cairngorms National Park
  • Experience a exhilarating journey along one of Scotland’s most thrilling roads, Bealach na Bà

Orkney & Scotland’s Northern Coast

From £1060pp

Small Group Tours
Duration 6 Nights
  • Explore the 5,000 year old Neolithic village of Skara Brae
  • Visit Inverness, the Capital of the Highlands, and learn about Scotland’s bloody history
  • Experience the stunning North Coast 500 from Inverness to Ullapool

Speyside Whisky Trail

From £705pp

Small Group Tours
Duration 5 Nights
  • The Speyside Malt Whisky Trail, including the distilleries of Benromach, Cardhu and The Glenlivet
  • Experience the breathtaking scenery of The Cairngorms National Park
  • Visit Royal Deeside and the pretty Highland village of Braemar
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