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Travelling with CalMac

Travelling with pets

woman holding cockapoo dog on board

Booking a trip? Don't leave your four-legged friend behind! They're part of the family and they travel for free. Bring them along so that they can share the adventures and enjoy the fun.

When you make your booking online, simply add your pet ticket to your online booking. This applies whether your pet will need a ticket to travel on board in one of our pet lounges, or if you plan to keep your pet in your vehicle, sit outside for the full journey.

Choose between the following pet ticket options:

  • Pet in passenger lounge - select this ticket type if you wish to bring your pet onto the vessel and use our designated indoor pet areas. There will be a cap on numbers as we need to manage the space available for everyone's comfort, especially that of your pet. If this option shows as sold out, please consider opting for a 'pet remains in car' vehicle.

  • Pet remains in car - select this ticket type if you wish to leave your pet in your vehicle or to sit outside for the full journey. Your pet will still be ticketed as we need to know they are on board. There's no limit on these pet ticket numbers since your pet will not using the public areas of the vessel. Please note, you won't be able to return to the car deck during the crossing.

  • Support and assistance dogs - select this ticket type if you are travelling with a support and assistance dog. Your pet will still be ticketed as we need to know they are on board. There's no limit on these pet ticket numbers. Support Dogs are allowed to access all public areas on our ferries, except designated children's play areas.

Buy Tickets

You can also book your pet via the phone too, where you need to. Details can be found via our Customer Services Contact page.

Booked a pet lounge ticket?

Have you booked a ticket for the designated pet lounge? Be sure to keep your ticket with you via your device or printed. These will be checked periodically throughout your journey.

As pets may sit outside but they will still need a ticket - please choose a 'pet in vehicle' ticket.

Travelling in a large group with a pet(s)?

As our pet lounges have restricted capacity, if you are travelling in a larger group, please be aware you may have to sit in separate areas to free up space for other pet owners who have also booked the pet lounge.

You may wish to consider leaving your pet in the car or sitting outside as an alternative if you are travelling in a group and wish to sit together.

If you are taking more than one pet with you into the pet lounge, you will need to book a ticket for each of your furry passengers.

Advice on travelling with pets

The welfare of our passengers is very important, and we ask that you read the following information before you travel with your pet. These points are applicable to both foot and vehicle passengers travelling with pets. It is our aim to make journeys as safe and comfortable as possible for all our passengers. Please take due care and show consideration for everyone on board.

Travelling in a vehicle

Ferries can be an unfamiliar place for pets. Space can be limited and noisy, so when you are travelling with a vehicle it is recommended that, where possible, pets remain inside vehicles for the duration of your journey. If you are on a longer journey and wish to visit your pet, please contact a member of staff who will be happy to help where they can, however, please be aware that visits are not guaranteed and may be subject to operational restrictions.

Pet travel checklist

  • Ensure you have arranged a ticket for your pet.

  • Always leave enough food and water in your vehicle for your pet.

  • Supply absorbent bedding or mats where possible.

  • You must make sure the ventilation inside your vehicle is good and the pet's welfare is well catered for.

  • Deactivate the interior motion sensor of your vehicle alarm.

  • Remember to leave them with their favourite toy.

  • Don't forget spare pet/doggy bags

Behaviour on board

  • Ensure you have arranged a ticket for your pet.

  • Always use designated pet areas and follow our signage.

  • Pets must be kept off seats and not obstruct emergency exits.

  • Pets are not allowed in any food, beverage, or carpeted areas (for hygiene reasons).*Support dogs are permitted to all passenger areas

  • Please stay with your pet at all times, other than when they are left in a vehicle.

  • Pets must be kept on a lead whilst on board.

  • If your dog is unsociable or nervous when in an unfamiliar or busy environment, we strongly advise that owners fit a muzzle whilst around other passengers.

  • Pets are welcome on all outside passenger decks.

  • Please note that if any damage is made to a vessel or premises i.e. furnishings, flooring, or equipment, or the property of other passengers, crew, or staff that you will be liable for any losses, costs, or expenses incurred.

Calls of Nature

We know that most pet owners are very responsible, and always carefully clear up after their pets. We ask that this approach extends to travelling on our ferries.

Special Arrangements

Where special arrangements would be helpful to owners i.e. storing a pet in an  RSPCA approved pet carrier or similar apparatus, provided by the owner, a location may be identified on the ship by prior arrangement with the port of departure. Owners should contact the port of departure at least seven days in advance of travel.

Responsible dog ownership whilst visiting our islands and communities.

Dog owners are asked to take precautions to prevent their pets from chasing or worrying livestock whilst visiting the islands and communities we serve. Tougher legislation has come into effect. You could face up to £40,000 fine or prison for allowing your dog to worry or attack livestock.

  • Do not allow your dog to approach animals or people uninvited (in open country, it may not be obvious when animals are around).

  • Where possible avoid animals - release your dog if threatened.

  • Always keep your dog in sight and under control - if in doubt use a lead.

  • Look out for signs highlighting that there may be livestock nearby. For more information view NFU News

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