Feb 16, 2017

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Should I travel to Tunisia?

Should I travel to Tunisia?

Following the deadly Tunisian terror attack in the resort of Port El Kantaoui, near Sousse, on June 26, 2015 – as well as the earlier atrocity in Tunis on March 18, 2015 – the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) took the decision to warn against all but essential travel to Tunisia, and a state of emergency has been put in place until at least May, 2017. For the latest advice, check the FCO site. I have a package holiday booked to Tunisia in 2017. Can I change or cancel my booking? The current advice from the FCO has been updated to extend the state of emergency status until January 2017. If for some reason you have a booking for travel in 2017 and beyond which you wish to change or cancel, you should contact your travel company or look on their site for updates. Thomson announced on January 31 that it would not be selling any Thomson or First Choice holidays to the destination until the FCO advice changes. Thomas Cook has cancelled all holidays to Tunisia up until at least May 24, 2017. I have made independent arrangements to travel to the country – do I have any rights? If you cancel your trip you may lose money if the travel company you have booked with is not offering free cancellations on its arrangements. However, the vast majority of booking companies should be able to help. Independent travellers with future bookings should contact their airline and hotel companies to discuss what options are open to them. Can I claim for any losses from an insurer? This will be dependent on the type of policy you have, but try to claim what you can back from your travel provider first and then work out your final losses. It’s unlikely that the cheapest policies will cover losses, while many more comprehensive policies will – but check yours to find out. Many providers are looking at claims as a result of the situation on a case-by-case basis and, unusually, some providers such as Aviva have announced that if customers with its policies are unable to recover costs from their tour operator for cancelling a holiday to Tunisia, they will allow claims up to a certain value for this. What if I travel to parts of Tunisia against the advice? If you decide to go to areas...

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Feb 14, 2017

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How to get the best holiday money deals

How to get the best holiday money deals

We all like to think we’re great at getting a holiday deal, so it’s surprising that so many of us fail to do the same when it comes to our holiday cash, often falling back on the easiest option on offer. Read on to find out how easy it can be to save big and get the most for your holiday money on your next getaway. Plastic fantastic? Know your charges Do you rely on your trusty debit and credit cards when paying for items overseas? I challenge you to tell me the charges you incur when using your cards in an ATM or at the till. Depending on the card you have, you could be paying a small fortune. Many credit and debit cards carry a 2.99% transaction fee with some having additional one-off fees for purchases. That’s an extra £2.99 to pay for every £100 you spend. Lloyds Bank and Bank of Scotland debit cards, for example, have a 2.99% transaction fee plus a £1.00 charge making a £100 transaction cost £103.99. Debit cards in particular tend to cost you more than credit cards and the costs are hidden – you don’t see them until they hit your statement. However, the costs don’t stop there. Every bank also has to convert the charge from the currency you are buying into sterling. And the vast majority take this opportunity to take a little more for themselves. It’s called the currency loading fee which can add as much as 3% to the cost. So you could actually find you’re paying as much as 6% extra for the privilege of using your card overseas. And forget trying to use your card in an ATM. Debit and credit card issuers are ready to impose an ATM charge of up to 5% or a minimum of £5 per withdrawal (on the Amazon credit card, for example) and then impose interest on top too. Your quick withdrawal of €30 from the hole in the wall has now become an expensive way to fund a round of drinks. So, check with your card issuer today to find out what you will be charged. Or, take a look at the handy chart on the MoneySavingExpert site which lists the most popular card issuers and their charges for spending overseas. Save...

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Feb 13, 2017

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11 of the most inspirational places on Google Street View...

11 of the most inspirational places on Google Street View

Wanderlust can be a terrible affliction. Sitting at your desk, dreaming of that far-off holiday; it’s enough to send you over the edge. Luckily, the Internet Gods at Google HQ saw fit to bestow a wonderful tool upon us, one that can sate your thirst for travel, if only for a little bit. Since its creation in 2007, Google Street View has gone from a useful, functional feature to a window into some of the world’s coolest, most...

Feb 13, 2017

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The best Irish pubs for St. Patrick’s Day in Britain...

The best Irish pubs for St. Patrick’s Day in Britain

Whether you’re actually Irish, pretending to be Irish or just fancy sinking several pints of Guinness in a green hat, St Patrick’s Day is the perfect excuse for a party. If you’re not lucky enough to be in Ireland on the day, we’ve rounded up some of the best Irish pubs in Britain where you can raise a glass to St Paddy this year. So, in the words of Oscar Wilde: “Let’s knock a couple back and make...

Feb 8, 2017

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The world’s most unusual UNESCO World Heritage sites...

The world’s most unusual UNESCO World Heritage sites

The UAE might be best known for its man-made islands and record-breaking skyscrapers, but it has also recently been granted its first UNESCO World Heritage site – the palm-filled Al Ain Oasis. To celebrate the occasion, Tamara Hinson has rounded up some more of the most unusual UNESCO sites around the globe. Head Smashed in Buffalo Jump, Alberta, Canada Yes, that really is the name of this Albertan UNESCO site. Thousands of years ago, native tribes would hunt buffalo by...

Feb 8, 2017

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How to do Berlin on a budget

How to do Berlin on a budget

Germany’s capital tells a tale of two cities. One grand, boasting imposing landmarks and pristinely-kept parks, and the other gritty, where graffiti is celebrated as an art form and parties pop up on every corner. Both sides of this split-personality city are equally beautiful and easy to experience on limited euros. Roxanne Wells advises on how to enjoy the best of Berlin on a budget. Where to stay on a budget The central Mitte area is where you’ll...

Feb 8, 2017

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Central and South America: Fine dining, natural wonders and excitement...

Central and South America: Fine dining, natural wonders and excitement

It’s an exciting time for Central and South America, with several airlines launching direct flights from the UK to countries which were once much more tricky to get to. To help you get to grips with the area, Tamara Hinson outlines where’s best for eating out, getting off the beaten track, partying, and connecting with nature. Dine in style Chile BA to Santiago British Airways launched their Santiago flights in January, creating the first direct route between the UK...

Feb 6, 2017

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Tricky Travel Quiz: February 2017

Fancy yourself as a bit of a travel trivia whizz? Put your knowledge to the test! Don’t forget to share with your friends to find out which of you is the true master of travel...

Feb 6, 2017

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How to book your next holiday with confidence...

How to book your next holiday with confidence

When it comes to buying a holiday, financial protection can be confusing. However, making sure you have the right cover is vital should something go wrong.   So, to help you prevent any holiday disasters, we’ve put together some simple tips to ensure you can book your next break safely and securely. How should you pay for your trip? These days, many of us look out for charges being added to our bookings when we pay by card,...

Feb 6, 2017

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10 things to do in Benidorm

10 things to do in Benidorm

The quintessential sun, sea and sand destination, Benidorm has been doing the trick for budget-conscious Brits for decades. With a reputation that precedes it and a loud, lively nightlife, the resort makes no apologies to anyone – but that’s the joy of Benidorm! If you’re after good fun, hot weather and low prices, you can’t go wrong with this Spanish classic. Hit the beach With three to pick from, Benidorm takes some beating for beaches. Award-winning Levante and...