Sometimes the business of going on holiday can leave you feeling like you need another holiday at the end of it all! In this blog we have collated a few tips to make it go with a swing.
Before You Book
Some people thrive off the busy atmosphere at airports but for others it can be overwhelming, particularly if you have children in tow or are saddled with a long delay. Consider your flight times when you book – Saturday daytimes are the busiest, whereas midweek night flights are much quieter. Most charter flights allow you to reserve seats with extended legroom – well worth doing on long-haul flights. If your flight is early in the morning, an airport hotel is worth considering. Look out for deals that include parking and an airport shuttle.
Check your passport carefully. If the expiry date is less than a year away, check the immigration requirements of your destination. Similarly if it’s on the tatty side it is liable to be refused. If you are honeymooning or have changed your name recently, check that your name is the same on your Passport, EHIC, Tickets and Travel Insurance. Find out about any jabs or medicine you may need for your holiday – some of them should be carried out 8 weeks before departure, but any protection is better than none.
Security At Home
Engage a trustworthy neighbour to keep an eye on your house, water plants, feed the cat and pick up the post. Don’t put your full address on your holiday luggage – your name, house number and postcode are sufficient and prevents from advertising to all and sundry that your house is unoccupied for two weeks. Similarly don’t leave a message on your voicemail saying that you are on holiday.
A little bit of forward planning can turn self-catering into a joy rather than a chore. Assume that your accommodation is more likely to be under-equipped and unlikely to have a tin opener/garlic crusher/scissors and pack what you can. Bring small quantities of salt, pepper and herbs to save buying large packs on arrival. And don’t forget a universal plug!
At the Airport
If your airline allows online or automated check-in, this is well worth using to avoid standing in tedious queues. If they don’t, arrive early and try and establish the likely check-in desk before it opens and sit near it. While you’re waiting, check that your hand luggage meets the regulations for size and weight and you have removed the items which may not be carried on board (find an up-to-date list at https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-for-transport).
Know Your Rights
If things go wrong on holiday knowing what can (and should) be done about it will ease the stress. Airlines and Tour Operators have certain obligations relating to flight delays, lost luggage and holidays not being as described in the brochure.
Take out travel insurance
Travel Insurance is a must for peace of mind on your holiday. Make sure that you are covered for any adventurous activities on your trip and that you have read the health warranty and declared any pre-existing medical conditions.
Know your destination
Visit the Foreign & Commonwealth Office website for advice relating to your destination www.gov.uk/browse/abroad and take a good guidebook with you.
We hope these tips will help make your trip go smoothly. Whether your holiday is a round-the-world luxury cruise or roughing it under canvas, enjoy it!