f4aviation Holiday Information & what to do when you're there

A great adventure camping holiday

July 30, 2014 | Travel Guides, Travel News | Permalink

The summer school term holidays can be long and difficult for parents and children alike and as those of us who have children, taking them away to Europe for a beach holiday can be a   very expensive exercise. Naturally we all want to do our very best for our kids, but what they like is adventure and the excitement of sleeping under canvas for the first time.

Camp sites today are very different to some of the ones that we ourselves may have experienced when we were younger and whilst there is some degree of DIY involved, no longer have we to subject ourselves to trying to get the primus stove to work for a cup of tea!

As an adventure for the kids, there are many places in this country that have excellent facilities and one that is sure to occupy all the family whatever the weather throws at us is a site near Robin Hoods Bay in North Yorkshire. This is Hook House Frame and the facilities hear include showers, toilets, sink, an electric kettle, microwave, fridge and freezer and all these are included in the modest price.

Robin Hoods Bay has an interesting rocky beach which is brilliant for rock-pooling, fossil-hunting and crabbing; this lies just below the camp site. The village itself is interesting and has a history of smuggling during the 18th century. There are numerous pubs as well as eating places and the old disused railway runs from Scarborough to Whitby and is great for walking or cycling.

Robin Hoods Bay Camping

The Jungle Beach Resort Sri Lanka

July 21, 2014 | Travel Guides, Worldwide Travel | Permalink

Sri Lanka ids a beautiful island full of contrast and now that the problem of a previous time when there were incidents in some parts of the island left long behind them, Sri Lanka is a great destination for the British holidaymaker.

The place which we are looking at today is just twenty seven kilometres north along the main Pulmoddai Road to the Jungle Beach Resort Hotel. With both sea as well as interesting land terrain, this luxury Sri Lanka beach resort has seen the hotel very cleverly incorporated within existing trees with plant life giving the look and feel as if in a tree house!

The hotel is set in a ten acre site and faces the luxurious beach to the front with jungle and a superb lagoon to the rear so the holiday maker is immersed in the sound of the waves of the Indian Ocean and songs from the birds. There are four styles of luxurious log cabin situated within the complex as a jungle, lagoon, beach or a cluster of villas with a private pool.

The cabins are all well equipped with 42” LED TV Large bathroom with indoor and outdoor rain shower I-Pod docking Station Safe DVD Player Complimentary WI-FI Mini Bar His & hers bath robes Tea & Coffee Facilities24 hour room service Hair Dryer and a Large King Bed.

The Jungle Beach could be a relaxing holiday or used as stop over for a few nights at the end of a sightseeing holiday on the island.

Jungle Beach Resort

Travel Insurance – full disclosure essential

July 18, 2014 | Travel Guides, Travel Insurance | Permalink

Taking out holiday insurance is a sensible option when travelling abroad on holiday, but when completing the proposal it is essential that you are totally honest. For example, if you fail to disclose any medical condition that may have occurred in the past, no matter how small or seemingly insignificant, you could find yourself without insurance at the very time that you need it. High blood pressure is one area that is often overlooked as it is fairly common in men as they reach middle age, declaring it will not prevent you from being insured, and it will not necessarily increase the premium cost.

When taking out travel insurance, ensure that all the countries that you intend to visit are included, some insurers exclude Turkey, now a very popular destination for British holiday makers.

Winter sports cover can often exclude some hazardous pursuits such as heli skiing or skidoo riding, others may not cover off piste skiing, if you intend to take part in any of these, tell your insurer so it can be included in the policy.

Alcohol is often a cause or reason for accidents or losing valuables. It is worth considering this before you decide to go on a long day out, your insurer can refuse to reimburse for accident or loss.

Whilst you may have no say in the matter, if you are taken ill or have an accident, having private medical treatment and not going to the local hospital can mean that you can find yourself severely out of pocket.

Should you have the misfortune to lose an item of luggage or have it stolen, it is essential that you obtain a police report with an incident number or letter. Similarly if your luggage has been lost in transit, get written confirmation from the airline, your insurer will almost certainly want to see this and the confirmation from the local police.

Check with your insurer that items of value is covered on the policy; it is not unknown for insurers to pay out a maximum, usually £250 to £300 for any one item, including cash. If you have valuable items which you need with you, insure them separately and keep cash and valuables in the hotel safe.

Travel insurance is not the most expensive item on a family holiday, ensure that you are completely covered and enjoy a safe trip away.

passportPicture: Christopher Elison

Amsterdam in the summer

July 13, 2014 | City Guides, Travel Guides | Permalink

Amsterdam is a delightful city and is so accessible to us from any part of the United Kingdom. Described by many as the finest city in Europe, Amsterdam is a place that everyone should try to visit at least once in their lifetimes’.

Naturally friendly people and a city where just about everyone speaks fluent English, rides a bicycle or travels on its many canals. Amsterdam is a city of contrasts, the buzz of a big metropolis but with none of the drawbacks. Most places of interest can be reached by hired cycle or walking amongst its gabled buildings, lovely bridges and canals that have old world charm. Top ranked museums and one of the most famous orchestras in the world, The  Concertgebouw with its long running Wednesday concerts.

In common with most cities, Amsterdam has its markets, grocery, and farmers, but one of the most popular has to be the Waterlooplein flea market, here you can wander around the stalls and see just about everything, vintage suits, camera parts, old and we imagine pretty useless keys, amongst many interestin items. Holland is famous for its flowers and the floating flower market is a huge attraction, the “Bloememarkt has more tulips that you could possible imagine!

There is a huge variety of places in Amsterdam where you can eat, fine dining to simple cafes, so the choice is exclusive high dining to tuck in your elbows and settle down some home-style cooking, for breakfast, lunch or tea; Amsterdam has it all.

Accommodation is plentiful and varies in price from top hotels at over £300 per night, to good clean budget hotels at a more modest £40. However why not opt for an apartment picking up something to eat at a local market, where you can look out over your own canal view with a glass of wine in hand, become a local!

AmsterdamPicture: Moyan_Brenn

Free pizzas on Frontier Airlines flight to Denver

July 9, 2014 | Travel News | Permalink

Frontier Airlines is one of the world’s many budget airlines, this one operates in America and like most other budget airlines in the world, it is noted for cheap fares but also for some pretty stringent bag charges. This can be $100 if checked at the airport, but even online it can be $25.

However the passengers on one flight were in for a huge surprise when the aircraft was diverted through bad weather when approaching Denver and had to land at Cheyenne Wyoming due to lack of fuel and a wait of several hours. The aircraft captain was sorry for his passengers and treated them to Pizzas that he ordered from a nearby Dominoes, paid for out of his own pocket.

The 35 pizzas were delivered just before the aircraft finally took off for Denver and landed there 15 minutes later. The captain is quoted as saying “Ladies and gentleman, Frontier Airlines is known for being one of the cheapest airlines in the US, but your captain is not cheap – I just ordered pizza for the entire plane.”

A delightful story, but one we imagine you will not see on Ryanair or EasyJet any time soon!

Plane Pizza

A money saving travel app for iPhone

July 8, 2014 | Travel Guides | Permalink

We all are aware of the many apps that can be downloaded so that we can play enjoyable, as well as frustrating games on our iPhone, but we have learned of an app that is not only very useful, but one which can potentially save travellers money too.

This useful app is from the luggage delivery specialist sendmybag.com and is a free download through iTunes. The app will no doubt prove to be very useful as most of the budget carriers are becoming stricter on the amount of luggage that we can take on aircraft, even the hand luggage seems to be shrinking in size allowed!

By utilising the services of SendMyBag it is possible to actually save over the cost of having luggage in the hold of the aircraft and the hassle of checking the bag in, and collecting from the luggage carousel is also avoided. The company will collect your luggage from your door and deliver it safely and quickly to your holiday destination.

Think of the relief at not having to take sports bags such as golf clubs and ski equipment through airports, but having them waiting for you when you reach your destination. Naturally the bags can be collected from your holiday apartment or hotel and sent direct to your home at the end of your period away.

SendMyBag is the largest specialist luggage shipper in the UK visiting more than 70 countries every month.

Sendmybag

Going it alone – guide to the singles holiday

May 25, 2014 | Travel Guides | Permalink

The stigma associated with singles holidays is not as prevalent as it once was, as more and more people are prepared to holiday alone or with an organised group of independent travellers.

At their inception, singles holidays were just that, a chance for singles to get away and mingle with other like-minded people. Today, however, these types of trips are geared to the individual rather than their marital status and those who choose to travel alone are just as welcome as any other holidaymaker. Companies that specialise in single traveller holidays offer people the chance to both meet others and visit exciting destinations in a safe and non-judgemental environment.

Booking a holiday as a single can have huge financial implications; hotels are generally not geared towards lone travellers and room supplements are costly. Booking with a tour operator ensures that they seek out the best deals on single rooms. The potentially awkward situation of sitting alone in a restaurant or the hotel bar is also eliminated on a singles holiday.

The majority of tour operators offer a mix of both guided and independent travel. Guides are unrivalled in their local knowledge and are always on hand with useful local information. Equally, they understand how important time alone is and will respect an individual’s wish to venture out alone, providing them with advice and tips on local attractions only if asked.

A singles holiday, above all else, is a great opportunity to meet new people, possibly even making friends for life. The number of lone travellers who return again and again is testament to their continuing popularity.

ChillaxPicture: Nicolas Roux

Cinque Terre – Seeing is believing

May 15, 2014 | City Guides, Travel Guides | Permalink

Cinque Terre (Five Lands), a string of five small ‘pearls’ located on Liguria’s coastline, is ready to delight travellers with superb scenery and interesting architecture. The ‘pearls’ are actually five Italian villages; Monterosso, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola, and Riomaggiore, placed among other wonders on the UNESCO World Heritage list.

Climate

Located on the west coast of the Italian Peninsula, these villages experience a mild oceanic climate, with temperatures ranging between 7 and 10 degrees Celsius during winter and between 23 and 25 degrees Celsius during summer. Frequent yet short rainfalls shower the entire region throughout the year.

Things to do and see

Holidaymakers can do many things in this region. For instance, they could visit the aforementioned villages, check coastal hiking trails, swim in the cool waters of the Ligurian Sea or spend time on beautiful, desolate beaches.

Additionally, small restaurants serving simple yet delicious dishes such as trofie with pesto sauce, tagliatelle with mushrooms and cabbage, and torte di verdura (vegetable pies) are a delight for the traveller who has never tasted authentic Italian cuisine. The best places to eat in this region are Cantina dello Zio Bramante and Enoteca da Eliseo.

Lodging

Travellers can find a variety of lodging options, ranging from camping to B&Bs and holiday villas. A few highlights include La Torretta, Alla Porta Rossa and Villa Cristina.

Transportation

British tourists can get from London to Genoa in about one hour and forty minutes by plane and from Genoa to Cinque Terre in about one more hour by train or boat. Frequent trains and boats connect different parts of Cinque Terre, allowing tourists to visit the entire region.

Cinque TerrePicture: Davide Vadala

Forget extortionate excess baggage fees with Send My Bag

April 26, 2014 | Travel Guides | Permalink

Baggage fees have been steadily climbing over the past few years mainly because of the rise of budget airlines, and with excess baggage fees so high it can really start to add to the cost of your holiday.

Thankfully there is a company that can help you avoid these extortionate fees by collecting your luggage at your home and delivering it to your destination at a fraction of the cost. Send My Bag can collect and deliver your heavy or bulky luggage wherever you are in the world and can service most major cities within 1-2 days.

This service is particularly useful for those who have heavy or bulky luggage or sport equipment that they want to take on holiday with them, and frees them up to travel light, perfect for journeys that have multiple transfers. Students who are relocating due to their studies can also use the service, which takes the hassle out of travelling.

With prices starting at just £25, Send My Bag is well worth considering if you are worried that your luggage is too heavy or bulky for the airline to take.

suitcase1Picture: Mamboman1

Contemporary cruising – a guide to modern day holidays afloat

April 15, 2014 | Cruises, Travel Guides | Permalink

Many people are deterred from taking a holiday afloat due to misguided pre-conceptions of what it will involve. The Marmite of the travel world, cruising is loved by some and loathed by those who have yet to dive in. It is, however, one of the fastest growing sectors of the travel market and accounts for one in eight of all foreign package holidays. Hopping aboard a cruise-ship today is a quite different experience to that of bygone years.

Today’s cruise holidays are quite often accessible to families; indeed, many cruise-liners welcome children and offer high-spec games rooms, crèche facilities, engaging kids clubs and dedicated child friendly deck areas. An ever increasing number of cruise companies now offer ‘kids sail free’ deals to encourage adults to bring the little ones along.

The idea of becoming seasick on a ship is another deterrent to embarking on a cruise holiday. Modern technology does its part in allaying these fears with stabilisers that flank the hull and other measures to prevent the rolling motion that is responsible for ‘mal de mer’. While it is not possible to completely rule out the chances of losing a couple of days to seasickness, there are various precautions the modern traveller can take; wrist bands that work on your pressure points are effective for many people who are predisposed to motion sickness and anti-sickness tablets are also available. Nowadays it is often possible to pin-point the areas of the ocean that will be most treacherous and provisions can be made to deal with it.

It is not uncommon, on a contemporary cruise-liner, to be ashore every day. If you have never been on a cruise you may worry that you will not get a real sense of the places you visit and will be rushed from port to port. While time is of the essence, there is usually plenty of opportunity to spend time ashore; it just takes a little advance planning and feeling a part of the action is a definite on many of today’s liners. Ships decant passengers in locations hosting world-renowned shows or once in a lifetime events.

Whatever your fears about cruising holidays you should have a wonderful experience and will never be bored.

Costa Cruise ShipPicture: Thomas Fitzgerald