Feb 2, 2016

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Revealed! How to do London with kids

Revealed! How to do London with kids

It’s the UK’s biggest city and boasts some of the country’s most famous landmarks, from Big Ben and Tower Bridge to the London Eye and Buckingham Palace. And although London is crammed with pricey designer shops, high-end eateries and glitzy nightclubs, it’s also home to hundreds of family-friendly restaurants and attractions, writes Fiona Whitty. The biggest problem is where to start. Allow us to help… Where to stay with kids The three designer-led Nadler Hotels are in great locations and are superb value as up to two children stay for free in their parents’ room. There are no restaurants but each room has a handy mini kitchen with microwave, fridge, cutlery and crockery – and a Nespresso machine – so you can save money by preparing snacks for the day or even grabbing a takeaway. Local cafes can deliver breakfast to your door and some restaurants offer guest discounts. The stylish brand new Nadler Victoria – next to Buckingham Palace – is offering introductory prices from £180 for a superior room (suitable for two adults and one child) and £200 for a deluxe room (suitable for two adults and two children). Holiday Inn hotels are also great for families as up to two children under 19 can stay for free and up to four children under 13 can eat for free with an adult. The Holiday Inn Kings Cross Bloomsbury is brilliant value with twin double rooms from just £110. There’s even an indoor pool and spa, plus you’re only a short bus or Tube ride away from the hustle bustle of Soho and close to Euston and Kings Cross train stations. Book hotels in London Where to eat with kids You don’t have to settle for fast food on a city break! Many places welcome children and some offer good deals. Head to a Bodean’s BBQ for tasty ribs, chicken, burgers and pulled pork – and one child eats for free with every adult. If you’re on the tourist trail the Soho branch in Poland Street or Tower Hill branch in Byward Street are handiest (mains from £8). Rainforest Cafe on Shaftesbury Avenue is pricier but a real novelty for younger children with its jungle décor and moving animal exhibits. Be prepared for the regular pretend rainstorms which see the elephants, tigers, gorillas...

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Feb 1, 2016

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Booking now vs booking late: The great holiday dilemma...

Booking now vs booking late: The great holiday dilemma

The Christmas holidays are a long, distant memory and your New Year’s resolution has already become a tedious ordeal. What could possibly pull you from the rigours of a post-festive slump? Why, booking your big summer 2016 holiday, of course. Whether you are planning a week in the sun, a city break for a long weekend or your main family getaway, you will be deluged with advertising shouting about holiday deals and offers. And, of course, getting organised by researching, planning and booking now will certainly give you something to look forward to at a time when the winter weather can get you down. But is it worth booking this far in advance or should you wait until the last minute to find a better deal? Here we place both arguments head-to-head to help solve a common holiday dilemma. Round one: Your situation If you have a family with school-aged children, work in a job with restricted holiday periods or have a set idea on the type of holiday you want to go on, booking now will be your best solution. Getting in early means you get the pick of the holiday crop and will be able to snare the holiday you want before everyone else piles in and snaps up those valuable seats on the plane. This is especially important for departures during the busy school holiday periods of Easter, Whit week and summer. However, if you’re just after a week away in the sun as a pick-me-up or are happy to be inspired by available deals, booking late and waiting for a bargain might suit you better. Round two: Your flexibility If you have to travel at a certain time or have a specific room or hotel requirement, booking now will mean you won’t have to compromise on your day of departure, or any other element of your break – as being one of the first bookers of the year means you’ll get the best choice of hotel or hotel room type, destinations and holiday length. If, on the other hand, you are truly flexible in terms of where and when you can travel then leaving it late and playing ‘holiday roulette’ can pay off with some truly stunning late deals. You won’t find many last-minute bargains in peak dates, though, so...

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Jan 26, 2016

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Should I travel to Tunisia?

Should I travel to Tunisia?

Updated advice: The current state of emergency in Tunisia has now been extended until February 2016. Please see the FCO site for further information. 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 – many holidaymakers will have had their summer holidays cancelled and may be wondering whether they should still travel to this popular sunshine destination in...

Jan 22, 2016

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Should I travel to Egypt?

Should I travel to Egypt?

As a result of a plane crash on October 31, 2015 in Egypt’s Sinai region that claimed the lives of all 224 passengers, the British government has suspended flights to and from Sharm El Sheikh International Airport. The situation left a number of British nationals stranded in Egypt, and, due to the nature of the incident, it may also be causing concern for those scheduled to fly to the popular resort in the coming weeks and months. UK carriers...

Jan 19, 2016

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Where are Brits flocking to this summer?...

Where are Brits flocking to this summer?

The new year might still be in its infancy, but for many Brits it’s already time to start thinking about the long-awaited summer holiday. And with the January holiday sales in full swing, there are plenty of deals up for grabs for super savvy travellers willing to search – those bargains won’t come and find you, you know. So, to help inspire you when planning your summer getaway, we’ve crunched the numbers to find out where Brits are looking to...

Jan 19, 2016

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The best UK events to perk up your weekends...

The best UK events to perk up your weekends

After a long week of work, Friday slowly rolls around again. “Finally”, you think, “two days of sweet freedom!” Five o’clock strikes and you make a dash for the nearest exit. But in your state of spreadsheet-induced euphoria, you’ve missed one minor detail: you haven’t actually made any plans for the weekend. So another marathon box-set session beckons or perhaps another Friday night at the pub has your name on it? No! Your TV can wait. The UK is...

Jan 19, 2016

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How to book your next holiday with confidence...

How to book your next holiday with confidence

With the influx of travel ads on the TV at the moment, and the freezing weather, many of us have already turned our attention to booking that all-important summer holiday or maybe even a series of breaks for 2016. Will it be the Med or somewhere far-flung? A beach break or a city trip? A cruise or a self-drive adventure? Whatever you choose, make sure you book your holiday safely and securely to avoid any travel-related disasters later...

Jan 18, 2016

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Bored of Barcelona? Try these alternative city breaks in 2016...

Bored of Barcelona? Try these alternative city breaks in 2016

Look beyond classic city breaks this year, writes Anita Isalska. When you swap a well-known city for somewhere a bit different, you’ll dodge crowds, tap into a new culture and your wallet will purr in contentment. So prise yourself away from Barcelona, Paris and New York – our alternative city breaks are so crammed with culture, gastronomy and nightlife that you won’t look back. Bored of Barcelona? Gorge yourself on Girona’s culture and cuisine For travellers, Barcelona is...

Jan 13, 2016

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Is it safe to go to Turkey?

Is it safe to go to Turkey?

If you’ve read reports about the recent bomb attacks in Turkey, you may be feeling apprehensive about the safety of the country, especially if you are preparing for a holiday there. But, despite the recent terrible explosion in Istanbul on January 12, two explosions in Ankara on October 10, 2015 and trouble in the wider geographical region, the majority of Turkey remains a safe place for holidaymakers. The Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) has not changed its stance on Turkey...

Jan 7, 2016

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Happy birthday, Elvis! 8 music-inspired trips to get you all shook up...

Happy birthday, Elvis! 8 music-inspired trips to get you all shook up

Some legends achieve a fame so great that they never really die: Elvis is one of them. And this year, on January 8, the King of Rock and Roll turned the tender age of 81. In true Elvis style, a big party is taking place at Graceland this weekend to celebrate, complete with birthday cake and tours of the Graceland mansion. While a trip to Graceland has to be one of the greatest musical pilgrimages in the world, he’s not the...