Half-term holiday inspiration…
The half-term holiday is just over two weeks away and if you’re a teacher or have kids who will be off school you might be thinking about booking a last minute getaway. Of course it needs to be something on budget and easy to travel to from the U.K so here is a little post on how I would look to book my quick getaway if I didn’t already have something planned and where I would go.
How to book
If you haven’t already read my post on How to travel during the school holidays then you should, as it shows how with just a bit of knowledge and time spent on the right places on the internet you can bag a bargain break. When I’ve convinced the other half into another holiday it’s normally because I have researched the hell out of it and found a knock-out deal and here is how I do it.
- Use the everywhere tool on Skyscanner for inspiration. This helps me to see what sort of places and what sort of prices I can expect for flights. I don’t always use Skyscanner to book flights but it’s more often than not my starting point.
- I then checkout this little beauty of a resource from Expedia; where to travel when as it really helps me to discover places I wouldn’t haven’t normally considered at that time such as Tunisia in October a couple of years ago (although FCO advice is now against travel to Tunisia after the devastating Terrorist attacks earlier this year).
- Once I have an idea of where we might want to go I consult my Holy Grail of travel planning resources, Tripadvisor. I do read some reviews and think I am not sure how legitimate this is but more often than not I do think there is truth in each review and the numbers can’t be all wrong so save a couple of the best accommodation options on the app. I then start to go through the different travel agencies and companies to look for the best deals. I always look at the British Airways holidays as we’ve often found great deals before and are on a never ending quest to collect as many Avios as possible. I then hit up the different low cost holiday providers and search engines and do a quick mooch over the Secret Escapes and Voyage Prive apps for anything I have missed.
- If there’s a bit of time and I feel in the mood then I might look to contact different companies for their best quote on a package deal just to see if it will beat our independent trip price. We (this should read I) found our insanely good deal to Cuba by doing this and getting agencies to price match or try to beat each other.
Where to go
I’m off to Iceland for four days and am unbelievably excited about it, but if I wasn’t going to Iceland it’s highly likely I could be going to any of these places.
3 nights – perfect for a European or North African sightseeing tour
Marrakech – still mild weather and the perfect quick getaway to the exotic.
Italy – sightseeing during the Summer is a killer so Autumn would be perfect and with a lot less people vying to get into the same sights you can spend more time inside them and in the amazing restaurants.
Barcelona – awesome at any time but again would be a lot less crowded in Autumn but with still reasonably mild and pleasant weather.
5 days – ideal for a long-haul citybreak
Dubai – I am desperate to go to Dubai, I think 4 nights and 5 days would be the perfect amount of time as it’s still pretty hot at this time of year.
New York – Not too cold and not too warm, the October break is just before all the Thanksgiving and Christmas madness really descends on NYC so an ideal time to get your fix of the Big Apple.
1 week – soak up some winter sun
Egypt – despite some rather troubling FCO advice, travel to Egypt needn’t be off limits and with great deals to Sharm El Sheikh at this time of year (Sharm is actually fine to travel to by FCO standards) you could get a great deal to escape to. As a diver I would head straight to my favourite diving destination Dahab after touch down in Sharm.
Spain – the sun stays around for a fair while in the Mediterranean so you may be able to get a decent beach break if you head to the mainland or one of the Balearic Islands.
Turkey – another great place for winter sun but I wouldn’t just come to Turkey for beaches as I would want to check out Istanbul as there are less crowds during the shoulder season.
I hope I’ve given you some inspiration for the upcoming school holidays and if you need any more ideas on how to book a bargain trip then see my post on the best apps and websites to help make travel planning easier. If you have any more ideas on which destinations would be great for a half-term getaway then let me know in the comments below.