HWS Alumni/Alumnae and Parent Trip

Cliffs of Moher

The Culture and History of Ireland

September 6 – 16, 2012
(9 nights and 10 days)

Tour Leaders

Pat is a Professor of Economics at HWS. Pat (as faculty director) and Sandy McGuire spent two semesters in Ireland leading the Colleges' Irish Studies program at the National University of Ireland (NUI) at Galway. They have participated in off-campus programs in London and Central Europe as well as a fall semester with Semester at Sea. In addition, Pat is co-founder (with Professor Joe DiGangi) of the Colleges' Public Policy program in Washington D.C. and he has been faculty director 10 times over the past 25 years since the program began in 1985. Pat has taught in the Two Cities course, a bidisciplinary course with Professor Jim Spates in Sociology, which has taken HWS students to both New York and Toronto for five days each as part of their regular coursework. The McGuires believe in the transformative impact of off-campus programs for our students whether it is in a foreign environment, in Washington D.C., in New York City or Toronto. During this trip, Pat will provide some background on the economic history of Ireland and also some insight into the rise and fall of the Celtic Tiger.

Irish pub

Trip Overview

Ireland has been described as the terrible beauty, the Celtic Tiger, the land of sad love songs and happy wars, and hundreds of other expressions. Join us to create your own description of this beautiful and friendly island. We will focus on the West of Ireland, where you can still see and feel Ireland's long and sometimes tragic history. We will expose you to the Ireland that we love so much - the sea, the rolling hills, the pre-Christian sites, the early Irish culture, the Irish language, the pubs and, most of all, the people of Ireland that you will meet along the way. We will visit cities and small towns, and you will have plenty of time to walk and talk on your own in the shops and in the pubs. You will learn about the history, the archeology, the language and the culture of Ireland from friends and colleagues whom we have met during our two off-campus Irish Studies Programs at the National University of Ireland (NUI) at Galway. We will walk and talk, rain or shine, uphill and down as we attempt to show you the Ireland of legend, song and poetry. We will see and feel the Ireland of the past, the present and perhaps the future. And we will have a great time - we promise you! Please see the itinerary for details.

Dun Aengus, Aran Islands

Map of Ireland

Trip Details

Cost: $2200 per person for double occupancy and $2450 per person for single occupancy.

What is included:

  • Hotel accommodations for nine nights at quality hotels located in the center of Galway, Westport, Sligo and Donegal
  • Breakfast each morning
  • Four group dinners on nights 1, 7, 8 and 9 – all other dinners are on your own
  • Transfers to and from Shannon airport
  • All tours, guides and transport as indicated in the itinerary
  • All entrance fees for site visits including the fare to and from the Aran Islands

Guinness –Ireland's famous dry stout

Fish and chips

What's NOT included:

  • Any meals not stated above
  • International flights - we will offer an optional group flight through our travel agent
  • Medical and travel insurance:
    • Every traveler needs to have medical coverage while in Ireland so check with your current medical insurance provider to see if you are covered abroad. If you are not, you can purchase a short-term travel medical policy online from companies like CMI or Med Ex Assist, to name just two.
    • We also strongly recommend that everyone purchase travel insurance to cover trip cancellation (not just trip interruption) in case you are unexpectedly unable to travel after you have paid for the trip.
    • Some companies offer a combined medical/travel policy if you need both. The best place to start the search for insurance is at http://www.insuremytrip.com/plans/index.html where you can choose medical, travel cancellation or both, and compare policies from different companies side by side.


Reserving a place on the trip:

  • We can accommodate a maximum of 26 people on this tour, so book early to ensure your place. Our alum/parent trip to Peru this past May sold out within two weeks!
  • In order to reserve a place on the trip, you are requested to fill out a booking form online. We will accept reservations on a first-come-first-served basis and we suggest that you reserve as soon as possible, as we expect this trip to sell out. Please note that alums and parents of HWS students have priority in booking this trip. Once we reach the 26-person maximum, we will start a waiting list.
  • Within 10 days of making the online booking, we require a non-refundable deposit of $500 per person. We prefer payment by check but credit card payment can be arranged by calling Betty Merkle in Alumni House at (315) 781-3771. The deposit will be applied to the overall cost of the trip. The remainder of the trip cost, minus the deposit, will be due by March 15, 2012.

    Checks should be made payable to "Hobart and William Smith Colleges" and mailed to:

    Sharon Walsh
    Center for Global Education
    Hobart and William Smith Colleges
    300 Pulteney St.
    Geneva, NY 14456

    Tel: (315) 781-3663
    email: walsh@hws.edu
  • Once we have received your online reservation, we will email you Part 2 of the booking form.

View of countryside
and Galway Bay

Cancellation policy:

Once you have paid the deposit, if you cancel the trip before March 15th, we may, at our discretion, refund your deposit if we are able to find a replacement for you.

If you cancel the trip after March 15th, you will lose your $500 deposit and you will be responsible for any fees or deposits that we have paid to vendors on your behalf that are non-recoverable by us. For this reason, we strongly recommend that you purchase trip cancellation insurance (see above under “What’s NOT included.”)

Group Flight:

We will provide a group flight option through our travel agent once the fares for next year are available. We expect round trip fares to be approximately $1000-1200 from New York. You are not required to purchase the group flight, although if you choose to book elsewhere, we suggest that you book the same flight (or a flight that arrives earlier than group), so that you can be included in the transport from the airport to the hotel. If you arrive later than the group, you will be responsible for making your own way to the hotel. Do not book any flights until we have contacted you about group flight options, so you are aware of the flight times, etc.



Dates: September 6 – 16, 2012

Cost: $2200 per person for double occupancy and $2450 per person for single occupancy.

Register/Deposit: Complete and submit the online registration form now to reserve your spot.

Within 10 days of making the online booking, we require a non-refundable deposit of $500 per person. The remainder of the trip cost, minus the deposit, will be due by March 15, 2012.