Sunday, June 28, 2009

Booking holidays... are NOT much fun

Mark has recently buried himself in his laptop looking for our next holiday destination. We want to take an inexpensive short 3 day long weekend in a place that not only epitomises summer but is summer itself in all its glory without being a grotty tourist trodden giant fish and chip shop. Easily done with all those cheap flights and websites....oh you are too too funny. Not a chance.

First you start with skyscanner to see where the cheapest flights are, pick a destination that you want to go to regardless of prices (Madeira is cheap for a reason you know), then you go on to Expedia to find out what the cost with hotels would be (package deals are cheaper), then you change it to the flights you want (leaving a 5am Sat morning and coming back 10am Sunday morning is cheap but never ideal), then pick a hotel that looks nice, then you read a few reviews (or if your Mark you read all reviews on the hotel dating back to 1980's then read them again to be sure) and finally you have a holiday destination.

So where are we going, well we are looking at going to Valencia, in Spain, which is the 3rd largest city in Spain, but it has lovely beaches, and is miles from Costa del Sol and Costa Brava (aka Sunny England as opposed to regular rainy England). I was pretty keen to get to Alicante, but Mark after reading reviews along the lines of it has "the best fish and chips" and another that says "its where the English are ashamed to admit they had visited" he decided it would not be very Spanish like. Given that he absolutly adores anything Spanish - quite like my adoration for everything French - we went back to the drawing board.

I know you see all the crazy cheap flights, we are right next to Europe its got to be cheap, its just across the North sea. Well its just not! You have to be super stong willed, subscribed to every active discount website imaginable, not be particularily fussy on your destination, book months in advance (you cannot be spontaneous), not mind early flights or mid week flights, Ryanair (my last £60 flight with them ended up costing £105 after a fee for luggage, a fee for using a credit card, a fee for booking online, an admin fee, and fee for not using a Ryanair credit card....ugh), happy to book an entire all inclusive week long trip, awful cheap no frills airlines and be prepared to press refresh a million times when the websites are jammed with others trying to do just the same. I just don't have the stamina.

However, next time I want to travel to the Algarve, for a week, next August, to an all inclusive British resort, flying Ryanair, sharing my holiday with the fish and chip loving Brits, at least I know it will only cost me £200 quid!! Bargain

PS I believe we worked it out...most likely Barcelona again, but in October now...

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