Organising a pilgrimage can seem a daunting prospect. To help you,
we have identified seven simple steps to a successful pilgrimage.
Participate in a McCabe Introductory Pilgrimage
We invite pilgrimage organisers to come and see the Holy Land. We will show you rather than tell you! The cost of this experience is heavily subsidised and is refundable if you lead a pilgrim party consisting of a minimum of 16 people. A McCabe introductory experience is conducted in the same way as a parish pilgrimage and is designed to give you the knowledge and confidence to lead your own parish on pilgrimage. This is also an opportunity to meet McCabe staff and our partners in the Holy Land.
Decide when you want to travel
Twelve to fifteen months preparation time is normal. Dates to travel will be influenced by factors such as your church calendar, school holidays and perhaps the length of time potential pilgrims will need to save. Consider planning your pilgrimage to celebrate an anniversary or other event in the life of your church. Ideal pilgrimage months are February to June and September to November, avoiding school holidays.
Discuss your itinerary with McCabe
We encourage input from the leader regarding worship and the ‘feel’ of the pilgrimage. We then produce a detailed itinerary incorporating your ideas. At this stage, we make initial reservations with the airline and hotels.
A personalised pilgrimage brochure
McCabe will produce a personalised brochure containing the agreed itinerary, hotel details, the tour cost and all the information required to make a reservation. We will also design a poster for you. We will print as many brochures and posters as you require and more can be sent by return of post at any time. Once the brochure is published the pilgrimage will take on a momentum of its own and firm dates and price will prompt people to pay a deposit.
Plan a brochure distribution among your parishioners and perhaps a meeting to launch the project.
McCabe does the administration
You collect booking forms and deposits in the first instance so that you can keep a record of who is travelling. You then send the booking forms and deposit cheques to McCabe in freepost envelopes that we provide. From that point on, McCabe takes over the administration and deals directly with your people. You are not required to do any banking of cheques or corresponding with your pilgrims.
On receipt of the booking form and deposit, we send each traveller confirmation of their place on the pilgrimage. Ten weeks before departure we send a final invoice and collect balance payments. Two weeks before you leave we send travel documents to each participant.
Neither you nor your church have any financial liability. If the pilgrimage is cancelled, say though lack of numbers or unrest in the Middle East, McCabe will promptly refund all monies paid.
Tour leaders’ information
Before departure, we send you a comprehensive briefing pack containing passenger lists, local telephone numbers, details of your guide, tipping recommendations and notes on every aspect of the pilgrimage designed to keep you well informed and one step ahead of your party!
You are not alone!
A McCabe representative will meet you at your departure airport and assist with check-in formalities. On arrival in the Holy Land, you will be met by your guide who will accompany you throughout your pilgrimage. The Albina family represents McCabe in the Holy Land and will contact you on a daily basis and assist where necessary.
We have worked with the same hotels and coach company for twenty five years and their respective staff and management understand your needs as a pilgrim party almost before you ask!