Saturday, 24 December 2011

That's Christmas: Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

That's Christmas: Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!: Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from the team behind the That's Team of online magazines! We hope that you are able to get and to giv...

Friday, 23 December 2011

Bag A Boxing Day Bargain To America

BAmerican adventures in 2012 have just got cheaper with TrekAmerica and Grand American Adventures offering up to 20% off all tours between February and September.

Travellers can save up to £547pp with TrekAmerica on all bookings made before 6 January and up to £483pp on bookings with Grand American Adventures up to 13 January.


Trailblazer: Save up to £547pp

- For those with a mission to take in all things stateside, holidaymakers can embark on this epic 64-day adventure from just £3,102pp. This two month circuit travels through 33 US states and Canadian provinces, crossing from New York to Vancouver and then back again from San Diego to the Florida Keys.

- Price: From £3,102pp land only (incl. 15% discount) including 53 nights' accommodation (camping & hotels), private transport, selected sightseeing and an experienced local leader.

NEW Westerner 3 BLT: Save up to £277pp

- On this brand new 21-day lodging tour, adventure lovers will head on a round-trip which starts and ends in Los Angeles, taking in the sights and sounds of the outback along the way. Crossing deserts, mountains, cities and canyons, the trip will take in San Francisco, Nevada, Yosemite, Monument Valley and Las Vegas.

- Price: From £1,572pp land only (incl. 15% discount) including 20 nights' accommodation, private transport, selected sightseeing and an experienced local leader.

Western Wonder: Save up to £119pp

- Travellers will discover the mystery of the open road on this seven-day tour as they head from Hollywood to the Grand Canyon through Las Vegas and San Francisco and on to LA. With a double dose of national park adventures, holidaymakers will spot the bears and coyotes of Yosemite National Park before exploring the natural wonders of the Grand Canyon.

- Price: From £479pp land only (incl. 20% discount) including 4 nights camping, private transport, a limousine tour of Las Vegas, selected sightseeing and an experienced local leader.


National Parks of the West: Save up to £483pp

- Taking in 11 national parks and monuments, this 28-day in-depth tour offers horse-back riding, a 2-night ranch stay and the chance to white-water raft on Snake River. Highlights include a view of the lava flows and volcanic cones in Idaho's Snake River Plain, the western-style saloons of Jackson, the panoramic views of Canyonlands National Park and the sunset over Grand Canyon.

- Price: From £1,935pp land only (incl. 20% discount) including 27 nights' accommodation (camping, hotels & ranch), private transport, most meals, white-water rafting, selected sightseeing and an experienced local leader.

NEW Northeastern Explorer: Save up to £349pp

- Travellers can share the spirit of the early settlers along Native American trade routes on this new 12-day tour of America and Canada. Starting in New York, holidaymakers take in cosmopolitan cities, small country towns and picturesque landscapes. With Colonial New England and French Canadian culture, people will experience the perfect combination of yesterday and today.

- Price: From £1,319pp land only (incl. 20% discount) including 11 nights' accommodation, private transport, selected sightseeing and an experienced local leader.

Southwest in Depth: Save up to £283pp

- For a 14-day cultural experience combined with the breathtaking Grand Canyon, holidaymakers will follow in the footsteps of the Navajo people and their ancestors. In southwestern Colorado guests will get a close-up view of the ancient Anasazi Indian cliff dwellings and in Utah travellers will experience two nights on an authentic Western Ranch.

- Price: From £1,135pp land only (incl. 20% discount) including 13 nights' accommodation (camping, hotels & ranch), private transport, most meals, selected sightseeing and an experienced local leader.

To find out more contact Grand American Adventures (0844 576 1406 / or TrekAmerica (0844 576 1405 /

That's Christmas: Christmas at The Grand Hôtel de Bordeaux & Spa

That's Christmas: Christmas at The Grand Hôtel de Bordeaux & Spa: The Grand Hôtel de Bordeaux & Spa, Bordeaux’s luxury Palace hotel, will be celebrating the upcoming festive season with a unique collaborati...

That's Entertainment News: Global Sounds For 2012: Contemporary, Jazz, Folk, ...

That's Entertainment News: Global Sounds For 2012: Contemporary, Jazz, Folk, ...: Town Hall and Symphony Hall Birmingham January - June 2012

That's Home and Household: Hotter Shoes reveals new collection of waterproof ...

That's Home and Household: Hotter Shoes reveals new collection of waterproof ...: Hotter Shoes has released its latest collection of waterproof walking boots and shoe... reports 'Dancing on Ice' outselling 'The X Factor', the website tour consolidator, has revealed that not only has the recent series of 'The X Factor' been trounced in the battle for viewers against rival 'Strictly Come Dancing', but it looks like popularity for 'The X Factor Live Tour' is also waning with more people searching for packages to this year's 'Dancing On Ice Live Tour' before the current series has even been aired.

Although the celebrity line-up for the new series of 'Dancing On Ice' has not yet been revealed, has noticed an increase in traffic to the website (between October to date) from customers looking for packages to the 'Dancing On Ice Live Tour 2012' with approximately 4495 visits compared to only 251 for The 'X Factor Live Tour' and 995 visits for the 'Strictly Come Dancing tour'.

Needless to say these figures are going to come as a blow for 'The X Factor' as it struggled throughout its current season to attract viewers with more and more people switching off and turning to its rival reality shows instead. Even a new judging panel including the likes of Gary Barlow and Kelly Rowland and other changes to the competition could not stop the live 'X Factor' final losing almost 4m viewers compared to 2010 when over 17.2 million tuned in to see Matt Cardle be crowned X Factor champ. This year's competition, won by girl group Little Mix, averaged 12.9 million viewers which worked out at a 44% share of the audience. If viewers from ITV+1 are also included then this would increase to an average of 13.1 million. Around 10.9 million viewers tuned in for the semi-final of 'Strictly Come Dancing' and on three separate occasions it edged out in front while 'The X Factor's' figures have fallen by 1.5 million year on year.

Rachel Jones, Online PR & Marketing Co-ordinator at, said: "We thought that with a new panel of judges and a few changes to the competition would have ‘The X Factor’ trouncing all other reality shows but it would appear that this is not the case. It's amazing to think that although 'Dancing on Ice' hasn't even hit our screens yet, there is an increased interest in searches for coach packages to see the live show. We can't put our finger on why exactly the show is more popular this year, maybe our customers know something we don't about who will be appearing in this year's line-up that has encouraged this interest - who knows."

To add a further blow, the winners single by Little Mix has achieved the worst first week of sales for an ‘X Factor's’ winning song since 2004. The single sold only 210,000 copies which is less than half of last year's winner Matt Cardle's first week tally of 439,000. The group also finished behind 2007's little-remembered winner Leon Jackson who managed to shift nearly 276,000 copies of 'When You Believe'.

Rachel concluded: "The tell-tale signs are there of the waning popularity of 'The X Factor' compared to the success of 'Strictly Come Dancing' this year. When you think about it, 'Strictly Come Dancing' got it spot on with the casting of three larger-than-life characters in the shape of Russell Grant, Nancy Dell'Olio and Robbie Savage, not to mention Edwina Currie. Perhaps it's the old-fashioned charm that makes 'Strictly…' and 'Dancing on Ice' so successful in comparison to their commercialised rival 'The X Factor'."

Unique Home Stays To Feature in New Primetime TV Documentary

Caroline Quentin hosts the show
Caroline Quentin host of the show
Luxury accommodation provider Unique Home Stays Unique Home Stays is excited  to point out that it will be appearing on your TV screens after taking part in a brand new eight-part observational documentary series to be aired in January 2012.

The primetime ITV1 series called ‘Cornwall’, will take in some of the delights of the beautiful and rugged county over the course of a Cornish summer.

Each episode includes stories about life in some of the county’s most scenic towns and villages and features characters from its communities.

The beautiful and truly unique properties offered by Unique Home Stays are shown in the programme as part of its focus on highlighting tourism in Cornwall and the range of beautiful places to stay on offer in the county.

The eight-episode series is being presented by actress Caroline Quentin, who has been filmed visiting properties with Unique Home Stays’ marketing manager Claire Ray and retail manager Jess Clark.

The production company behind the show, Twofour, have had previous success with shows such as the long running 'Hotel Inspector', and the BBC's inspirational 'Harry's Arctic Heroes'.

Unique Home Stays’ Marketing Manager Claire Ray said: “It’s such an exciting series and we can’t wait to see the final version aired on national TV!

“Tourism is one of the biggest revenues for a beautiful county like Cornwall, so as forerunners in the luxury accommodation market we are delighted our properties have been filmed for this exciting show.”

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

That's Christmas: ‘Jingle’ all the way with my Travel Cash

That's Christmas: ‘Jingle’ all the way with my Travel Cash: Britons who travel abroad or visit overseas websites for their Christmas shopping needs could pocket an accumulative £8.6m as my Travel Cash...

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

National Geographic Traveller UK - One year on

One year on

The arrival of the seventh issue of the 180-page National Geographic Traveller (UK) Jan/Feb 2012 and the introduction of a special Family issue concludes a fantastic first year for the magazine, with a whole lot more planned for 2012.

2011 highlights
• This year has seen the successful launch of six issues - increasing frequency to EIGHT issues in 2012 (September and October issues will be single issues).
• Launch of special issue – National Geographic Traveller - Family Spring 2012 (in December 2011).

View the 26-page sample issue by visiting
• Successful promotions with Groupon, Living Social and partnerships with Mumsnet and National Geographic Kids, as well as a whole host of others…
• Launch of the website in April 2011.
• Over 14,000 subscribers in the first year
• Available in all major supermarkets and high street magazine retailers
• Over 3,500 Twitter followers and 1,600 Facebook users
• Two awards for best features - Emma Gregg’s Namibia story won the British Guild of Travel Writers’ best long-haul feature and Andrew Eames won the German National Tourism Office’s Travel Writer of the Year Award for his ‘It’s Germany but not as you know it’ feature. Plus nominations for best consumer magazine and best young writer at British Travel Press Awards.
• Launch of a Travel Photography Competition ( now closed for new entries and a Travel Writers’ Competition (closing date 23 January).
• Superb subscription offers over the course of the year: From £9.99 (for six issues) to £11.90 (seven issues); free gifts (a rucksack/across the body bag) while stocks last; and the chance to add the two special issues of National Geographic Traveller – Family for just a £1. All current offers are inside the magazine!

See the 26-page digital sample of the Jan/Feb 12 issue:
Find us on Facebook:
And Twitter:

Editorial Director Maria Pieri said: “We’ve had a fantastic first year and we’re looking forward to working on an eight-issue frequency as well as moving into apps and all things digital too. And with the launch of our special Family issues we’re proving we’re the leading travel title in the market.”

National Geographic Traveller (UK) is published under license by Absolute Publishing Ltd (APL), from the National Geographic Society in Washington, D.C. It became the 15th local-language edition when it was launched in December 2010. The magazine also is available in China, Spain, Russia, the Netherlands, Israel, Poland, Slovenia, Latin America, Armenia, Czech Republic, Croatia, Indonesia, Romania and South Africa. The 180-page travel and lifestyle magazine is packed full of you-are-there photography, authentic travel experiences and inspiring narratives, all focused on the brand’s theme “All Travel, All the Time.”

National Geographic Traveler (USA) is the world’s most widely read travel magazine. It championed sustainable travel before it was cool and, eight times annually, celebrates journeys that are about place, experience, culture, authenticity, living like the locals and great photography. It makes a distinction between tourism and travel and stresses inquisitive, not acquisitive, trips. It employs storytelling and you-are-there photography to inspire readers to pick up and go. And, with the theme of “All Travel, All the Time,” it eschews fashion and fluff in favour of articles that offer a strong sense of place, inspiring narratives that make readers take trips, and solid service information to help them plan those trips.

The National Geographic Society is one of the world’s largest nonprofit scientific and educational organizations. Founded in 1888 to “increase and diffuse geographic knowledge,” the Society’s mission is to inspire people to care about the planet. National Geographic reflects the world through its magazines, television programs, films, music and radio, books, DVDs, maps, exhibitions, live events, school publishing programs, interactive media and merchandise.

National Geographic magazine, the Society’s official journal, published in English and 33 local-language editions, is read by more than 40 million people each month. The National Geographic Channel reaches 370 million households in 34 languages in 168 countries. National Geographic Digital Media receives more than 15 million visitors a month. National Geographic has funded more than 9,600 scientific research, conservation and exploration projects and supports an education program promoting geography literacy. For more information, visit

Celebrate the New Year in true Cypriot style! New Year Packages from €159 per person

Thinking of escaping the cold weather to celebrate New Year in the sun, by the sea?

The popular 4* Palm Beach Hotel & Bungalows ( in Larnaca, Cyprus has the following package available for those making a last minute decision to head to the sun:
New Year’s Eve 1 or 2 night packages – 31 December/ 01 January - €159 or €222 per person.

The Palm Beach is offering two packages for New Year’s Eve that both include an extravagant gala dinner on New Year’s Eve with live music and show, a champagne breakfast to start the New Year off in style and a New Year’s Day festive lunch. One or two night’s bed and breakfast accommodation, plus those staying for the extra night are treated to a French buffet night on 01 January 2012.

Packages don’t include flights. These can be booked through Easyjet ( from £311 per person, travelling from Gatwick or Monarch from Manchester . Extra nights at the Palm Beach are from €42 per person per night on a bed and breakfast basis.

The Cypriot winters tend to be very mild and average around 18 - 21˚C in the day with bright sunshine and the evenings around 9 - 11˚C by the coast. In the Troodos Mountains however there is snow so keen skiers can take to the slopes for a few days skiing. The Cyprus Ski Club ( started in 1947 and developed the ski resort to now include four ski lifts and eight well-maintained Alpine pistes and facilities.

During the festive season there are also local excursions around the island or the opportunity to hire a car to explore on your own. The popular 4-star Palm Beach Hotel & Bungalows near Larnaca is situated on the Mediterranean coastline, and offers five star facilities and services including the Wellness Centre, where guests can recharge their batteries with a range of massages, plus sauna, Jacuzzi and steam bath.

For the energetic there are tennis and squash courts, plus outdoor and indoor heated swimming pools and the Water Sports Centre where guests can try their hand at windsurfing, waterskiing, sailing and diving. There is also the opportunity to go horse riding, just 6km from the hotel.

Larnaca town has a great choice of shops for some post Christmas retail therapy as well as a plethora of wonderful restaurants, trendy bars and nightclubs to suit all ages and music tastes.

For reservations contact the Palm Beach Hotel & Bungalows on T: +357 2484 6600 or book online at and for more information on Larnaca visit

Monday, 19 December 2011

British Tradition of Afternoon Tea on Antique Porcelain revitalised at 15th Century Swan at Lavenham

The iconic 15th century Swan at Lavenham in Suffolk’s countryside, has brought a new dimension to the British tradition of afternoon tea with the introduction of its indulgent Emperor Swan Afternoon Tea. Along with other Swan tea menus, it’s served on delicate, antique porcelain in front of a roaring log fire bringing people together for a refined, convivial occasion, just like in times gone by.

Afternoon tea is said to have started with Anna Maria Russell, the 7th Duchess of Bedford in the early 1840s when it was common for people to take just two meals a day, breakfast and then dinner at around 8pm. The Duchess, who was always hungry by mid-afternoon, asked her staff to serve bread, cakes, biscuits and tea in her boudoir at around 3pm and began inviting friends to join her.

Soon afternoon tea was respectable enough to be taken in the drawing room and became a fashionable pastime of the upper classes when ladies would change into long gowns and tea services were made of the finest china. These days afternoon tea has become an occasional luxury or treat, but the tradition has been revitalised in the quintessentially English surroundings of The Swan with its ancient oak beams and inglenook fireplaces.

Devised by The Swan’s AA two rosette Head Chef, Justin Kett, the Emperor Swan Afternoon Tea begins with a selection of freshly prepared sandwiches on home-made speciality breads cut into neat triangles with, or without, the crusts. The tempting choice includes venison with cranberry jelly on rye bread; smoked salmon, caviar, cream cheese and cucumber on dill bread; crab and lemon mayonnaise on tomato bread and Manor Farm egg mayonnaise and cress on sea salt and black pepper bread.

Home-baked fruit and apple and walnut scones follow with local preserves, butter and clotted cream plus a selection of three delicate pastries and cakes. You can also choose from eight loose leaf and fruit teas, all for £21.50 per person; or add a glass of refreshingly chilled Adnams Brut Champagne for an extra £11.

If this is too much there’s a Traditional Afternoon Tea with home-made finger sandwiches at £15.50 or the lighter Suffolk Cream Tea at just £8.50, which might leave room for dinner.

The afternoon tea menu is served daily in The Swan at Lavenham from 12 noon (as an alternative to lunch) until 5pm in the lounges and contemporary style Brasserie; on warmer days it can also be taken outside in the secluded courtyard gardens; to book a table call 01787 247477,

Travel Management Company Can Offer Best Fares To All for Business Travel needs

CT Business Travel announces it can now also book the best online consumer fares for business travel purposes, and client’s still get all of the benefits of their full travel management service.

A recent article published on suggests unmanaged business travel could become more of the norm due to better deals online. However, CT Business Travel’s Managing Director Mark Kempster was quick to respond: “We already offer our clients the opportunity to book the cheapest prices available, even if that means we book through sites such as Expedia, Easyjet or British Airways on their behalf. Our business model is based on charging a transparent management fee, so who we book business flights, hotels and car rental through makes no difference”.

Kempster continued, “The key difference is companies who pay the small fees we charge for using our service enjoy all the benefits that come with using a corporate travel specialist. This allows a business to focus all its efforts in running their company rather than wasting precious time managing their business travel needs”.

As an independent business travel agent, CT Business Travel works with all airlines, hotel and car rental companies worldwide - it has no preferences. However, being part of Uniglobe does mean CT Business Travel has considerable buying power and secures the best business travel airfares, hotel and car hire rates, which it can access in instances where the best consumer internet deals are not suitable or available.

The benefits to companies who use CT Business Travel’s services are substantial, such as having their own team of qualified staff taking care of all their travel requirements, visa advice and entry requirements. It also includes an out of hours service which proves incredibly useful when clients get caught up in adverse weather conditions, strikes or freak occurrences like last years’ ash cloud.

CT Business Travel offers clients a credit facility and prides itself on the high level of service it provides, which is reflected in the long standing client accounts it manages and retains, which is impressive considering clients do not have to commit to any contract term.

Another important benefit is CT Business Travel’s ability to work with its clients to device their policy compliance which it then implements and follows. This can include setting budget levels for employees, travel policies like class of travel depending on the duration of a flight, or when individuals are allowed to travel etc.

With the use of CT Business Travel’s sophisticated technology, CT Business Travel can effectively monitor and report on all bookings made. This information allows a client to understand how budgets are being spent, where potential savings can be made and instances where policies are being abused.

The travel management fees CT Business Travel charge are minimal and range from £10 to £35 per booking, which depends on the nature of the transaction, such as whether a booking is made through the call centre due to being a complex itinerary or using the online booking tools CT Business Travel provides.

For more information on how to become a client of CT Business Travel and the services it provides, use one of the liks above, or give them a call 01892 673427.

TV, Tap Water and Teabags join ‘My Own Bed’ in Britons Most Missed List When Abroad

Nearly a third of Britons miss their own bed the most when on holiday abroad according to with the Welsh missing it more than any other region!

19th December 2011 – As over four million Britons get set to jet off to sunnier climes during the festive season, it seems it’s not just the Queen’s speech and crisp winter mornings they will miss, according to a new survey by Topping a list of what Britons miss the most when holidaying abroad is ‘their own bed’ (30%), followed by the convenience of tap water (17%).

The top five list of the most missed, revealed by the poll of over 2,000 British adults, also includes missing out on favourite TV programmes (8%) and not being familiar with our surroundings, with ‘knowing my way around’ coming in at number four (7%). A decent morning cuppa was also important to holiday makers, with ‘my own teabags’ making it into the top five (5%).

According to the poll, the Welsh seem to be a nation of home comfort lovers, with 40% saying they’d miss their own bed the most. Those from the East Midlands are most likely to be craving a good old cup of English tea (12% vs. 5% GB wide) and it appears that the true British pub lovers of the UK are located in the North West, as residents from here are more likely to miss their local pub when jetting off to another country (5% vs. 2% GB wide).

It’s the regular routine of the TV that those from Devon, Cornwall and Somerset areas miss more than any other region, with 13% of respondents in South West Britain saying they missed their favourite TV programmes when away - 5% above the national average.

Andrew Shorrock, Product Manager at an online car hire comparison site, comments: “Our survey really does show that no matter how appealing a hot and sunny destination might be, us Brits really do savour our home comforts. You simply can’t beat your own bed, a nice cup of tea or even your own car, according to 4% of men! However, if you are planning on heading overseas this Christmas, you can try and make every detail as much like home as possible, even by choosing a preference of hire car.”

Results below from the survey of what Brits missed most when holidaying abroad:

1. My own bed (30%)
2. Tap water (17%)
3. Favourite TV programmes (8%)
4. Knowing my way around (7%)
5. My usual teabags (5%)
6. My own car (3%)
7. Driving on the left hand side of the road (3%)
8. My local pub (2%)
9. None of these (25%)

For more information on travelling abroad and great value car rental, car hire comparison or for more information on car hire destinations or airport car hire, visit

FACTFILE: is an independent price comparison website whereby customers can choose a car hire out of 24,000,000 offers from 130 suppliers and 90.000 stations in 178 countries and book directly. is connected with the most reputable car hire suppliers worldwide over an XML-reservation interface. The customers can reserve their desired car hire with only two steps and can specify their offer by filtering through price, car category, equipment, doors / passenger and supplier. In addition, the customer can immediately see which services are included in the offer. Another advantage: Bookings can be made directly on the site.

By exclusively negotiated rates with the car rental companies also guarantees special terms and prices. Furthermore, our trained call centre provides support to our customers with their online reservations and also with any other questions around the subject rental car. They are available by phone from Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. – for free. The team care about concerns and booking procedures. From England you dial the toll free service-hotline 0800 098 82 20 and from USA and Canada the toll free number 001 888 816 5478. Short news also on Twitter:

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Top Holiday and vacation trends for 2012

When all the turkey has been eaten, the last Christmas cracker pulled and 2011 starts to draw to a close, as well as New Year resolutions, people will start thinking about where to jet off to on their summer holidays. So where will the Great British public be heading in 2012 and what trends will we see in the travel market? Thomson and First Choice have put together their predictions of what the year ahead will have in store.

Booking trends
Although money will continue to be tight for many households, people will not be willing to forgo their annual break in the sun and would prefer to save in other areas. While still escaping to the sun, customers will be looking for quality breaks away in 2012, which are unique and offer great value for money.

First Choice expects more holidaymakers to select All Inclusive hotels next summer as people will be looking to have more control of their holiday budget. First Choice will become the Home of All Inclusive in 2012 as it becomes the first large tour operator to sell 100% All Inclusive holidays, so it should be the first port of call for anyone looking for this type of holiday.

The trend for flexibility will continue, as more holidaymakers will be looking for more 10 and 11 night holidays, as one week is too short or they are concerned about leaving their job for a full two weeks.

Thomson and First Choice also expect to see an increase in demand for their unique holiday concepts such as Sensatori, Couples, Families, Holiday Villages and SplashWorld, as Brits look to spend their hard earned cash on a holiday that can’t be found anywhere else.

Traditional Mediterranean getaways are also tipped to be the top hot spots for Summer 2012. Brits will be flocking to book holidays to the Balearics and mainland Spain, which they know and trust. However, Thomson and First Choice also expect to see a surge in popularity for up and coming destinations like Cape Verde, Jamaica and Croatia. Mexico is also set to be a top choice for 2012, as it offers real luxury in a stunning location at good prices.

There has also been a lot of speculation in the media about Libya having the potential to be a hot tourist spot in the future. Thomson Cruises agrees and it has already been scoping out itineraries that will include ports of call in Libya as well as Algeria and the Black Sea for Winter 2012/13.

Thomson Cruises also expects to see a very strong demand for cruises departing from the UK next year, particularly with “new to cruise” customers that prefer not to fly and from existing cruisers who live within close proximity to Harwich and Newcastle. It also predicts there will be a trend for more adventurous and unusual cruises as new and traditional cruisers want to visit some of the least discovered destinations in Europe and North Africa.

Where to go to in 2012
The Balearic Islands: Menorca, Majorca and Ibiza
Traditional Mediterranean destinations such as Menorca, Majorca, and Ibiza have always been a favourite holiday hotspot amongst Brits, and are continuing to become more popular as market volume continues to grow.

Menorca is the perfect spot for anyone looking for a beach holiday, as the island has more beaches than any other island in the Balearics, so there’s a huge emphasis on relaxation. Majorca has a great variety of things to do, whether it’s partying in Magaluf, or enjoying gorgeous tapas food in Palma, there’s something for everyone.

Ibiza to some may evoke images of wild nights out, however the island has a lot more to offer, such as white sand beaches, a beautiful countryside, and delicious fresh seafood. Thomson has introduced Thomson Family units in each of the Balearic Islands which are proving to be popular with customers with families. Thomson Family resorts are designed to keep the whole family happy, and every hotel in the collection has a 4T or 5T rating.

Thomson offers seven night family holidays to Menorca staying at the 4T Victoria Playa on an all inclusive basis, from £780 per person, with the first child from £465, and second child from £570. Price is based on a family of four sharing, and includes flights departing from London Gatwick airport on 22 August 2012 and transfers. To find out more or to book this holiday visit or call 0871 231 5595.

Thomson offers seven night family holidays to Majorca staying at the 4T Aparthotel Alcudia Pins on an all inclusive basis, from £899 per person, with the first child from £570, and second child from £655. Price is based on a family of four sharing, and includes flights departing from London Gatwick airport on 13 August 2012 and transfers. To find out more or to book this holiday visit or call 0871 231 5595.

Thomson offers seven night family holidays to Ibiza staying at the 4T Hotel Presidente on a half board basis, from £690 per person, with the first child from £465, and second child from £570. Price is based on a family of four sharing, and includes flights departing from London Gatwick airport on 22 August 2012 and transfers. To find out more or to book this holiday visit or call 0871 231 5595.

Cape Verde
Cape Verde is a particularly new tourist destination but it’s already proving popular as Brits seek to discover these exotic islands. Cape Verde is made up of ten tiny islands, but the islands of Sal and Boa Vista are the most popular amongst holidaymakers. The islands are just off the west coast of Africa and comprise of an exotic mix of African, Brazilian, and Portuguese cultures. The secluded islands are natural, un-built upon and beautiful, and you’re guaranteed untouched white beaches.

RIU hotels are popular with customers travelling to Cape Verde, especially the 5T RIU Touareg.

New for the First Choice Summer 2012 programme is the 4Sun Oasis Salinas Seas, which is part of the First Choice Premier collection.

Thomson offers seven night holidays to Cape Verde staying at the 5T RIU Touareg on an all inclusive basis, from £819 per person. Price is based on two adults sharing, and includes flights departing from London Gatwick airport on 03 May 2012 and transfers. To find out more or to book this holiday visit or call 0871 231 5595.

First Choice offers seven night holidays to Cape Verde, staying at the 4T Oasis Salinas Seas, on an all inclusive basis from £839 per person. Price is based on two adults sharing, and includes flights departing from London Gatwick airport on 11 June 2012 and transfers. To find out more about this holiday or to book visit or call 0871 200 7799.

Croatia is an up and coming destination for holidaymakers. Croatia is all about the cafe-lined cobble streets, boats bobbing in harbours and the beautiful countryside. There are traditional towns, modern holiday resorts, pebbly beaches and charming fishing villages. Croatia is a fabulous destination for anyone who is looking for culture, and there’s something to suit everyone with a great choice of all inclusive hotels, private villas, or self catering apartments.

Thomson offers seven night holidays to Croatia staying at the 3T Hotel Park on a half board basis, from £595 per person. Price is based on two adults sharing, and includes flights departing from London Gatwick airport on 05 June 2012 and transfers. To find out more or to book this holiday visit or call 0871 231 5595.

Holidays in Mexico look set to be a big destination for 2012. Mexico has it all – delicious food, great weather, plenty of excursions day and night, and beautiful beaches. Mexico is known for its sleek all inclusive beach resorts, so it’s the perfect destination for anyone who wants to relax in luxury. An extremely popular hotel is the 5T Sensatori Mexico which is the ultimate luxury escape, situated on a beautiful beach it has a lagoon like swimming pool and six gourmet restaurants. Sensatori hotels, which are exclusive to Thomson, are all about the senses and are not only prefect for couples but also have separate child areas and clubs to cater for families.

Thomson offers 14 night holidays to Mexico staying at the 5T Sensatori Mexico on an all inclusive basis, from £1519 per person. Price is based on two adults sharing, and includes flights departing from London Gatwick airport on 07 June 2012 and transfers. To find out more or to book this holiday visit or call 0871 231 5595.

Jamaica looks set to be another big destination for 2012 as the Jamaicans get set to takeover London for the Olympics. The Jamaicans are going to be the team to watch during the Olympics thanks to the big personalities on their team and due to the carnival atmosphere they bring to the events. Thomson thinks that travelers will want to carry on the party after the Olympics by heading over to Jamaica to see where stars like Usain Bolt grew up and train.

The atmosphere is sure to be electric in the lead up to the Olympics too, as the island gears up to watch their nation shine! For Winter 2012 Thomson has new 10 and 11 night duration holidays in Jamaica. A hotel in Jamaica that’s set to be popular for this summer is the 5T Secrets St. James Montego Bay, which is part of the Thomson Couples collection.

Thomson offers seven night holidays to Jamaica staying at the 5T Secrets St. James Montego Bay on an all inclusive basis, from £1479 per person. Price is based on two adults sharing, and includes flights departing from London Gatwick airport on 19 June 2012 and transfers. To find out more or to book this holiday visit or call 0871 231 5595.

Programme changes for 2012
As part of the long haul programme for Winter 2012, Thomson has introduced new 10 and 11 night durations in Jamaica and the Maldives. It extends Thomson’s collection of 10 and 11 night long haul holidays that already includes Florida, Mexico, and the Dominican Republic. Excitingly the first Thomson’s Couples hotel is also being introduced in Aruba for summer 2012, in the form of the 4T Bucuti Beach Resort. Prices starting from £1399, this is a romantic retreat set on one of the Caribbean’s most beautiful beaches. Thomson offers the only direct flight to Aruba from the UK.

Thomson Cruises Ex-UK Cruises
For Summer 2012 Thomson Cruises has reintroduced cruises from the UK on Thomson Spirit. Based in Newcastle from May to July 2012 and Harwich in August and September 2012, customers can simply drive to the port, climb aboard and start enjoying their Thomson cruise without having to fly from the UK. Thomson Spirit will sail 16 different ex-UK itineraries, taking in 39 destinations and providing a great selection of 3-14 night cruises. Prices start from just £629 per person based on 2 adults travelling on the 6 night ‘Magic of the Fjords’ cruise from Harwich on 26th August 2012.

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Sunday, 18 December 2011

Red Funnel Isle of Wight Ferries Offers a Smarter Way to Book

Red Funnel, the Isle of Wight specialist, has launched a fully transactional mobile website for customers with Smartphones.

The new Red Funnel mobile site is one of only a handful in the industry to offer iPhone, Android, Windows Phone and BlackBerry users the ability to make vehicle and foot passenger ferry bookings online.

Visitors to and from the Isle of Wight travelling via Southampton can now quickly book their ferry online up to an hour before departure from any location in the world as long as they have a mobile or WiFi connection.

It is also possible to buy tickets to a wide range of events and festivals such as vDub Island, Rhythmtree and the legendary Isle of Wight Festival together with admission to premier attractions such as Osborne House. All of these items can be purchased in a single transaction using payment methods which include PayPal, Visa, MasterCard and American Express.

The new functionality also gives customers the ability to retrieve and view unused bookings and display a barcode on the device which can be scanned at check-in, making printing etickets a thing of the past for mobile users.

Furthermore, functionality has been provided to allow customers to securely manage their Travel Card accounts and maintain their user preferences and notification options such as free SMS service alerts.

Jonathan Green, Red Funnel sales & marketing director commented “Red Funnel’s previous mobile offering has proved extremely popular for checking sailing times, viewing live vessel position information and for keeping up-to-date with service news. The new transactional functionality makes the site a unique one-stop-shop for Smartphone users wishing to travel to or from the Isle of Wight for business or pleasure”.

Users of Smartphones are automatically redirected to the new mobile site when they visit (bookmark:


Red Funnel Isle of Wight Ferries operates ro-ro passenger vehicle ferry services between Southampton on the UK south coast and East Cowes on the Isle of Wight. The Company also operates Red Jet Hi-Speed passenger only ferry services between Southampton and West Cowes. Red Funnel carries in excss of 3.5 million passengers per annum and is currently celebrating its 150th anniversary.

The Company has reputation for IT innovation and was one of the first ferry companies in the late 90s to offer a travel and destination based website with full online booking arriving just a few years later. Today, well over 80% of ferry bookings are made online and Red Funnel’s previous mobile optimized website has served over 200,000 visitors since July 2010. Red Funnel was also first cross-Solent ferry operator to install FREE Wi-Fi for customers across its ro-ro fleet of ferries and at its four terminals.

Saturday, 17 December 2011

National Geographic Traveller - Family Spring 2012 OUT NOW

Latest issue
National Geographic Traveller - Family Spring 2012 is available now in UK newsstands, a special issue focused on family travel - one of two 180-page special issues planned for 2012.

Maria Pieri, editor and editorial director, said: “This special issue of National Geographic Traveller - Family is designed to give travellers with families inspiration to get up and go; to take an adventure and to instil the love of travel our audience expects.

“We’ve been extremely excited by the positive response to this special issue and are pleased to welcome both National Geographic Kids and Mumsnet in this launch edition – as well as a whole series of family travel experts – giving their thoughts, views and ideas on travelling with kids.”


Cover Story: 60 Great Summer Getaways – Beat the winter blues and dive into our top summer break suggestions for family holidays for all ages. Close to home, go cycling in Switzerland, hit the road in Morocco or sail the Spanish islands. Further afield, see Australia by camper van, try Kerala with kids, or live like a bushman in Namibia… and a whole lot more.

Destinations: Take the kids on Safari, how to survive Florida’s theme parks, teen trips to Thailand and Croatia, active breaks in Europe, paradors and rural retreats in Spain, Great UK Days Out, Scotland in film and pull out guides for Dubai, Paris and the Algarve.

Real Travel: Our young explorer discovers India, we ask parents and kids what they thought of their last holiday, managing expectations for a successful holiday and tips on having a great multi-generational trip.

Survival Guide: Travel experts answer your questions, how to tackle delays, the pros and cons of all-inclusives, managing infants and flying, car hire in Italy, and our travel clinic gives advice on travel health issues.

Interview: Supermum and superstar Angelina Jolie on travel, parenting and education.

Smarter travel: From our glamping top 10, to the best beaches in Sardinia, and how to keep the kids occupied when you’re on the move… our front section has it covered.

Competition: Don’t miss – a superb five-day trip to Morocco for a family of four with Families Worldwide.

Get a taster of this Spring 2012 special issue by viewing the 26-page digital sample:

National Geographic Traveller – Family will be published twice a year, with a cover price of GBP3.85, via subscription and on newsstands.

• Subscription gift: £12.90 for seven issues of National Geographic Traveller and two issues of Family – and a free gift (a rucksack/across the body bag) while stocks last. Don’t miss out.

Promo code: NGTFSPR12. Don’t forget to check the box to add the Family magazine to your subscription.

• website: Competitions, subscriptions, blogs, features and more.

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Final plans in place for Swanage and Purbeck's 3rd Walking Festival

Organisers are thrilled to announce the launch of the Third Swanage and Purbeck Walking Festival, which will run from April 28th until May 6th 2012.

The Isle of Purbeck in Dorset has some of the most stunning scenery in the UK and the walk programme is designed to provide people of all ages, interests and abilities the chance to roam along the beautiful Jurassic Coast and over unspoiled heathland, through nature reserves and idyllic Dorset villages. The area is blessed with an abundance of wildlife, and those taking part can expect to see some of the UK’s rarest species such as the Sikka Deer for example, as well as magnificent and iconic landmarks such as Corfe Castle and Old Harry Rocks.

The programme is set to be as diverse as possible this coming year, take a leisurely stroll for a mile and a half walk around Swanage, discovering the fascinating history of this beautiful Victorian seaside town, or for the more active take the day out, with sixteen miles along the South West Coast Path on the infamous 'Jurassic Roller Coaster. Expect a variety of experiences, with discounts for those opting for trips on Swanage Steam Railway, and pub lunches included for some, or how about resting your feet and eating a packed lunch, sitting in a flower-filled meadow and looking out to sea?

Main Sponsor Oswald Bailey, the outdoor clothing and camping retailer, is once again supporting the festival and says....
“We are delighted to be involved with this popular event in the walking calendar once again, as a Dorset based family firm with 19 shops around the UK, the event totally encompasses the ethos of our brand. We want to encourage people to get outdoors to appreciate what our natural landscape has to offer and this event is the perfect way to do that.”

Festival organiser Andy Pedrick, commented: “The festival is now well and truly established and it has proved tremendously popular, it’s a great way for everyone to explore the Purbeck’s, and learn about how special the area is. Next years programme will include events of special interest, such as photography, art and food, and family activities etc. It’s going to be fantastic.”

More details can be found on the Walking Festival website, or for more information on Swanage and the Isle of Purbeck please visit

Seek inspiration for your own Egyptian adventure starting this festive season

Seek inspiration for your own Egyptian adventure and visit the new galleries of Ancient Egypt & Nubia open at the Ashmolean

Book a Christmas and New Year Nile cruises, with 50% saving for second traveller

Britain’s oldest museum, the Ashmolean ( founded in Oxford in 1683, opened its doors a few weeks ago to six newly refurbished galleries housing collections from Ancient Egypt and Nubia (now Sudan).

Visitors are treated to over 40,000 antiquities collected by the museum over 300 years from around 100 archaeological sites in Egypt and Sudan, including many mummies that have never been seen by the public before.

Those interested in Egyptology will be fascinated by the collections that tell some of the most interesting stories of archaeological discovery ever, and if this inspires a visit to Egypt, specialist tour operator, Discover Egypt, is currently offering fantastic deals on Nile cruises – a great option for seeing the best of Egypt’s many ancient sites.

A 7-night cruise on board the wonderful 5* Viking Princess is from GBP 699 per person, with the second person travelling for just GBP 349, on selected departures up until October 2012. The price includes full board cruise, return flights from Gatwick and 10 guided excursions around the amazing sites en route.

For those looking to escape over Christmas or the New Year, there is availability for departures from Gatwick to Luxor on 19 and 26 December 2011 and a 7-night Nile cruise on board the Viking Princess. Prices are currently just £799 and £949 per person with the 2nd traveller going for £399 and £474 respectively, making a Nile cruise - a fantastic value, festive seasonal escape.

This is one of the best times of the year temperature wise to glide down the Nile, when it is a very pleasant 25 degrees with nine hours of sunshine on average – perfect for relaxing and topping up the tan without having to worry about stuffing a turkey and keeping the peace with all the family.

Highlights for holidaymakers include visiting the Valley of the Kings, the burial place of the Pharaohs including that of Tutankhamen, the Valley of the Queens, including the Temple of Hatshepsut, the Temples of Karnak, Colossi Memnon, Esna and Edfu, Aswan and its High Dam, the Unfinished Obelisk and the Old Granite Quarries.

The Viking Princess is a newly refurbished 5* boat, offering 49 cabins with stylish décor, spacious interiors and traditional wood furnishings, plus large sundeck with bar, lounge bar and plunge pool – perfect for relaxing and enjoying the tranquil sail down the world’s most magnificent river.

For further information contact Discover Egypt on 0844 880 0461 or visit

Sunday, 11 December 2011

Rezidor announces new Radisson Blu hotel in Sochi, Russia

The Rezidor Hotel Group, one of the fastest growing hotel companies worldwide and the leading international hotel operator in Russia/CIS, has announced the addition of a new hotel to its portfolio - the Radisson Blu Resort & Congress Hotel, Sochi. The property, located in Sochi, Russia, features 500 rooms and is scheduled to open its doors in Q1 2013.

"We are delighted to add this hotel to our growing Russian portfolio. The property will enjoy a beachfront location and comprise one of the largest conference centers in Russia - it will be a true landmark," said Kurt Ritter, President and CEO of Rezidor.

Abbas Aliev, President of Hotel Development CJSC, commented on the project, saying: "Our development will follow the most modern and ecological construction standards. The property will be the first hotel project built within the frame of preparation for the Winter Olympics in 2014. We are glad to start this project together with Rezidor, a highly recognized hospitality company, and are looking forward to a successful cooperation."

Besides 500 modern guest rooms with Radisson Blu signature services such as free high speed internet access, the hotel will offer a comprehensive range of food and beverages, including an all-day restaurant, 2 specialty restaurants, 2 bars and a nightclub. In addition, the 15,000 square meter congress centre will offer a 1,500 square meter banquet hall, numerous conference and meeting rooms, and a dedicated press centre. Leisure facilities will include indoor and outdoor pools, a fitness centre, tennis courts, and a kids club.

Rezidor expects the Radisson Blu Resort & Congress Hotel, Sochi to be a year-round destination. In summer, the nearby beaches will beckon sun-starved Russian families. In winter, Sochi's soon -to-be famous ski slopes will be within easy reach via a planned high-speed rail and during spring and autumn the hotel's substantial congress centre will accommodate conferences, delegations and other events. The hotel is already under construction and the opening in early 2013 will allow one year of preparation before the Winter Olympics.

Sochi is currently undergoing a major transformation from a regional tourist hub into a global tourism destination. Massive development is underway to improve the infrastructure and create new and modern attractions, including theme parks, stadiums and enhanced ski facilities.

Sochi's main stadium will also host the 2018 FIFA World Cup finals. With such ambitious plans, the Sochi area has become a focus for Rezidor's business development and the group is already operating the Radisson Lazurnaya Hotel, Sochi. Signed projects under development include two ski resorts in nearby Rosa Khutor (Radisson and Park Inn by Radisson), and two Park Inn by Radisson hotels in the city center of Sochi.

About The Rezidor Hotel Group:
The Rezidor Hotel Group is one of the fastest growing hotel companies in the world. The group features a portfolio of more than 415 hotels in operation and under development with 90,000 rooms in over 60 countries.

Rezidor operates the brands Radisson Blu Hotels & Resorts and Park Inn by Radisson in Europe, Middle East and Africa, along with the Club Carlson loyalty programme for frequent hotel guests. Under a worldwide licence agreement with the iconic Italian fashion house Missoni, Rezidor also operates and develops the new lifestyle brand Hotel Missoni. In November 2006, Rezidor was listed on the Stockholm Stock Exchange. Carlson, a privately held, global hospitality and travel company, based in Minneapolis (USA), is the majority shareholder.

The Corporate office of the Rezidor Hotel Group is based in Brussels, Belgium. For more information on Rezidor, visit

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Winter Sun Protection From Little Terra

UV sunsuit from Little Terra
Christmas is often a time of year when families jet off to warmer climes for a winter sun holiday – and solar protection for youngsters is just a click away with Little Terra’s sunhats, sunglasses and UV sunsuits.

A popular choice for holidaymakers at any time of year is the Jack Wolfskin reversible Mosquito Hat.

Featuring, UV protection of UPF 40+, the wide-brimmed hat also includes insect repellent to help keep mosquitoes away.

Little Terra’s specialist children’s buyer Carolyn Budding has also built up a range of high protection sunglasses ideal for winter sun breaks, which are as enticing for children as they are reassuring for their parents, with brands including Loubsol, Kidzbanz and Babybanz

Carolyn said: “At Little Terra, our children’s sunglasses have been carefully selected to filter UV rays and shield young eyes .

“Sun rays come from all directions, and the most efficient method of protecting the eyes is to wear good quality sunglasses, and to also wear a protective hat.

“A wide-brimmed hat can protect eyes from any rays coming from above or below the sunglasses – and choosing wraparound sunglasses rather than standard design frames offers further protection.

“Design features such as soft temple ends and soft silicone nose and brow pieces embedded in the frame also make for a more comfortable fit.

“Some of our products also feature an adjustable neoprene strap to make sure the glasses fit securely and don't get pulled off.”
UV sunsuits are ideal for holidays because, as well as offering protection from rays, they take up little space in a suitcase, are easy to rinse through at the end of the day and quickly dry out, and can be worn out sight-seeing, by the pool, beach and in the sea.

Little Terra retails the time-proven and trusted range of UV resistant clothing for children with the Radicool 100+ UPF Skins range, from Australia. The range features all-in-one suits, tops and shorts and hats which incorporate protection for the back of the neck.

Carolyn added: “Australia has pioneered extremely effective methods of sun protection over the years and that really appealed to us when we looked at the best range to stock.

“We’ve looked carefully at the marketplace and really liked the fact their clothing offers a UPF rating of 100+, which provides an exceptional level of protection against both UVA and UVB rays.”

Little Terra has produced free downloadable guides to help with the purchase of children’s sunglasses and goggles, as well as UV sunsuits.

Find out more at

100, not out! Park Inn by Radisson Bedford celebrates 100 years of employee service

The Park Inn by Radisson Bedford has proudly announced a milestone achievement with four dedicated members of the team having recently reached a combined 100 years of service at the hotel.

This truly amazing accomplishment demonstrates a level of loyalty rarely seen in these modern times. Team members Alan Abrahams, Hardish Kaur, Eddie Jones and Darryl Wilson have spent most of their careers at the hotel, serving thousands of guests and experiencing numerous changes in the hotel throughout their time, including a number of owners and General Managers over the years.

To mark this extra special occasion, Rebekka Hammersley, General Manager hosted a special awards ceremony on Wednesday 30th November for all team members - the date marking the 40th anniversary of Alan Abrahams employment - making him the longest serving employee in the history of the Bedford hotel.

"I am extremely proud of my team members and amazed by the dedication and commitment shown by these four very special people. It really is an honour to work with them." said Rebekka Hammersley, General Manager at the Park Inn by Radisson Bedford.

The awards ceremony celebrated 100 years combined service of four team members:
- Alan Abrahams, Maintenance Porter, aged 59, joined the hotel in November 1971
- Hardish Kaur, Kitchen Porter, aged 58, joined the hotel in October 1991
- Eddie Jones, Chief Engineer, aged 69, joined the hotel in April 1991
- Darryl Wilson, Linen Porter, aged 34, joined the hotel in November 1991

The Park Inn by Radisson Bedford offers stylish accommodation in the town centre, with all 120 rooms fully equipped to suit the needs of both business and leisure travellers. The hotel also offers function rooms that can accommodate up to 450 guests.

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Make money from the Olympic boom

* iStopOver makes participants an average of £3,000 a year
* £2bn in tourist revenues expected to come to London
* Not enough accommodation to cater to expected 7 million visitors
* iStopOver to fill the shortfall of missing hotel beds

Approximately 7 million visitors are expected to converge on the UK next year as the Olympic Games come to London. The majority of these millions are expected to stay in London but, as recent figures show, there simply isn’t enough room! But iStopOver, widely regarded as event specialists, is showing how we cash-strapped Brits can make money by renting our spare rooms to visitors during the games. Potentially making Londoners £millions and solving the Olympic accommodation problem.

For homeowners, iStopOver is a proven way to generate supplementary income by offering travellers home-away-from-home accommodation. Listing flats or rooms for rent during the London Olympics is a proven method of earning extra money.

iStopOver estimates that there are 2 million empty spare rooms in London alone with many more in the UK as a whole. With Brits struggling to handle the rising cost of living, it makes sense for homeowners to make extra money by providing much needed beds for the Games. iStopOver gives homeowners an easy way to market, book and profit from their empty bedrooms or properties.

Anthony Lipschitz, CEO of iStopOver explains: “As we’ve seen at previous events like the Winter Olympics in Vancouver and the World Cup in South Africa, fans travelling to see the games are aware that local hotels and traditional B&B’s hike up their prices, which makes the trip unaffordable for most people. Renting from a Host can provide you with a unique stay, whether or not the Host is rooming with you. This has proven to be a good way for visitors to get well-priced accommodation – which will be almost impossible to find – but, more importantly, a brilliant way for those with room to make some much needed extra cash.”

“It also solves the pretty pressing problem of how to accommodate the amount of visitors to the UK’s capital. This is a serious issue which, if not addressed, could cause chaos. There is space for everyone; we just need to unlock it, which is why we encourage locals to list their properties with us – and it’s free to do so.”

*iStopOver stops individuals from profiteering by encouraging them to list for a reasonable price.

iStopOver Hosts have had tremendous success with global sporting events, including the FIFA World Cup in South Africa. Deon Botha, from Johannesburg, had never thought to list his property for rent, “Because we had many rooms that weren’t being used – my wife and I thought that we should rent them out. We found iStopOver on Facebook and decided to list our space. It was the first and only listing I did.”

Shortly after listing with iStopOver, Deon made over 20 bookings during the month long tournament, “It went so well that we had to make more rooms to accommodate more bookings!” he explained.

Deon was able to generate enough money from the World Cup booking to pay for an extension on his house, “We used the extra income to pay the builders on our house! It’s unbelievable – we’re continuing to build on our success from iStopOver.”

iStopOver has seen interest in London accommodation triple in the last month alone. “The demand for London accommodation is already overwhelming,” says Lipschitz. “iStopOver has dedicated an entire team of customer representatives to help those who wish to list their UK properties – should they need help in the process.”

The support team is accessible various ways:

• Hosts can start with listing their flat here:
• Access the support team by clicking on the ‘Got A Question?’ tab located in the bottom right hand corner of the webpage to connect and chat in real time with a representative.
• Email: with any questions.

Terms of Participation

Listing a flat on the site is free of charge – once a booking is made, there is a 3% fee to the Hosts to help with administrative costs and marketing. Homeowners stand to make well over a few months’ rent during the Olympic Games. Hosts have access to the site’s social media tools to help promote their listings via the Facebook site ( or tweeting about their location.


Established in Toronto in 2009, iStopOver ( offers its Guests great accommodations in 92 countries around the globe, thanks to its large variety of unique spaces for everyone, at any price point. Acting as the clearinghouse between Host and Guest, the company matches those with excess space with people looking for short-term accommodations whether for vacation, business or any other purpose. The company’s peer-to-peer network and security features ensure privacy and peace of mind at every step along the way.

For more information visit or contact:

The Radisson Blu Waterfront wins prestigious Green Tourism Business Gold Award

The Radisson Blu Waterfront Hotel's introduction of a range of measures to help safeguard both the local and global environment and community in which the hotel operates has been nationally acknowledged by the Green Tourism Business Scheme.

The four star Jersey hotel, which is situated near to the Island's south coast Ramsar site of special interest, is the first hotel in the Channel Islands to achieve a Gold Award from the Green Tourism Business Scheme, the UK's leading sustainable tourism certification scheme.

Commenting on the Radisson Blu Waterfront hotel's assessment, Paul Jeffries from Green Tourism said: "This is an admirable achievement due to a range of outstanding good practice initiatives. Highlights include 'Eco Active Business' membership, excellent energy and water monitoring and strong commitment to local environmental and community projects. The hotel's links to, and promotion of 'Genuine Jersey' is impressive, and its involvement in local charities along with sponsorship of various sporting events and festivals reflects a strong commitment to sustainability in a wider sense."

Applicants to the scheme are scrutinised on over 145 separate measures covering a range of areas such as energy and water efficiency, waste management, biodiversity and more. Qualified advisors then award accreditations ranging from Bronze through to the highest achievable grade, Gold.

Peter Munns Chief Engineer at the Jersey hotel, St. Helier said: "We are delighted to have achieved the Gold Award from Green Tourism. It is our aim to become the industry leader in environmental management within the Channel Islands and whilst we are pleased with our efforts so far, we will continue to progress and do all we can as a business to improve our protect the environment."

Monday, 5 December 2011

Beat the Brochure: Top 10 Travel Bloggers of 2011

Beat the Brochure announce their Top 10 travel bloggers of 2011 who have inspired travellers and been a prominent feature in motivating travel throughout 2011.

Online Travel Company Beat the Brochure has put together the 10 best travel bloggers of the year. The bloggers chosen have been prominent in promoting travel, especially travel in Europe, as well as family travel, and helped to inspire Beat the Brochure and its customers.

Top 10 Travel Bloggers 2011

Ibiza Inside - @ibizainside

Runaway Juno - @RunawayJuno

Europe a la Carte - @karenbryan

Starry Eyed Travels - @katyabroad

Backpacks and Bunkbeds - @packsandbunks

Isabelles Travel Guide - @IsabellesTravel

Euro Trip Tips - @eurotriptips

Blondie Travel Blog - @PolishMojito

Turkish Travel Blog - @turkishtravel

Inside the Travel Lab - @InsideTravellab

Daniel Ox, from Beat the Brochure, comments, “Travel Bloggers have fantastic audiences and followers and are currently dominating social media within the travel industry. {{Independent travel bloggers not only inspire staff at Beat the Brochure but their blogs help us keep up with trends and information in the destinations we sell}}, as well as giving us great insight into what consumers are looking for.”

“We have built excellent relationships with travel bloggers through social media and will continue to do so. Our Top 10 was difficult to compile but those featured have made a real impact in 2011 and we look forward to getting to know more and more travel bloggers in 2012.”


Beat The Brochure’s technology brings all the leading UK travel suppliers together in one simple search, affording our customers access to the very best deals from leading operators such as Thomson, Thomas Cook and First Choice.

Our technology also has the ability to bring together a huge range of hotels, flights, cars and transfers to create your own bespoke package - offering you the ultimate in flexibility at lowest possible price in one seamless experience.

Beat The Brochure is part of the award winning Como Street Travel Group with offices based in Central London, Essex and Blackpool and Florida, now boasting a team of almost 100 experienced travel consultants.

Beat The Brochure ( is a fully bonded member of the Travel Trust Association (TTA U0898) and is licensed by Civil Aviation Authority (ATOL - T7270) offering you and your money the very best in financial protection and peace of mind at all times.

You can find out more about the fantastic deals we have on offer by following @beatthebrochure on Twitter or becoming a fan on Facebook.

Kuoni voted best ‘Luxury Tour Operator' at the Sunday Times Travel Magazine Readers' Awards 2011

Kuoni is justifiably proud to have been voted number one in the 'Luxury Tour Operator' category at the Sunday Times Travel Magazine Readers’ Awards 2011, held at the beautifully restored St Pancras Renaissance Hotel, London.

This is the first year the Sunday Times Travel Magazine has held a ceremony to celebrate with the winners of these prestigious awards, as voted for by the Sunday Times Travel Magazine readers. The ceremony was hosted by the editor, Ed Grenby, and attended by industry leaders from the airlines, hotels and destinations.

Naomi Wilkinson, Head of Marketing, Kuoni UK said: "I would like to say a big thank-you to the readers who voted for us. At Kuoni, we pride ourselves on our breadth and depth of product in the luxury arena, as well as our renowned customer service and tailor-making capabilities, so to win the 'Luxury Tour Operator' Award makes us very proud."

Other winners in the Sunday Times Travel Magazine Readers' Awards included: Hotel Arts Barcelona (European City Hotel), The Peninsula Hong Kong (Worldwide City Hotel), Rome (European City Break), Southern Spain (European Beach Destination), Maldives (Worldwide Beach Destination), New York (Worldwide City break), Australia (Worldwide Adventure Destination), British Airways (Short-haul Airline) and Virgin Atlantic (Long-haul Airline), all of whom Kuoni are delighted to be working with.

In previous years, Kuoni has picked up the following Sunday Times Travel Magazine Readers' Awards: Favourite Family Tour Operator (2010); Favourite Tour Operator for family holidays (2009); Best Longhaul Tour Operator (2008) and Best Travel Company (2006/2005/2004).


Kuoni was established in 1906 in Switzerland by Alfred Kuoni, a visionary adventurer and explorer of his time who opened some of Europe's first travel agencies. It has branch operations in over 40 countries. For 105 years Kuoni has been creating holidays with a spirit of adventure and has been recognised consistently, winning coveted awards such as The World's Leading Tour Operator for 11 years in a row at the World Travel Awards, Best Large Tour Operator at the 2011 Daily Telegraph Ultratravel 100 Awards for five consecutive years and scored most highly in the Which? top 20 travel company survey 2011.

Kuoni has also been voted Britain’s Best Long-haul Tour Operator by travel agents for the past 29 years. Kuoni offers travel and packages to a variety of worldwide destinations.

For customers who like to book a holiday face-to-face with their own personal consultant, they are invited to pop into one of Kuoni's exclusive travel stores across the UK. Kuoni stores can be found in; High Street Kensington, Knightsbridge and Cheapside in London, Blue Water, Bristol, Cambridge, Cheltenham, Dorking, Guildford, Kingston, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Milton Keynes, Nottingham, Sheffield and Solihull. Coming soon: Canterbury, Chichester, Westfield Stratford City and Winchester.

Kuoni is ABTA and ATOL protected.

Bupa International releases health guides to Hong Kong and Singapore

Bupa International has published two new health guides for expatriates in Hong Kong and Singapore. The guides include information on vaccinations, medical insurance and emergency healthcare.

Expatriate health information is increasingly sought after as a growing number of people relocate to foreign countries for work. Information on healthcare in the East Asian region is particularly needed, as the area's many booming industries have drawn a large number of foreign workers in recent years.

Expatriates already living in Hong Kong or Singapore and those who are planning to move to either country can access the health guides via the Bupa International website.

The Hong Kong health guide discusses vaccinations and the various infectious diseases that expatriates in Hong Kong may be susceptible to. For those wondering whether to take anti-malarial medicines prior to their move, the health guide explains that this is unnecessary, as the mosquito-transmitted disease is not found in Hong Kong.

However, though malaria is not found in Singapore, the Singapore health guide suggests that expatriates take measures to prevent mosquito bites, as dengue fever and chikungunya have both been reported on the island.

The two health guides also provide information on international health insurance options that expatriates in Singapore and Hong Kong can benefit from and give an overview of the healthcare systems in both city-states, such as the availability of specialist care, the number of hospitals and the nature of primary care.

"Moving and living abroad can be daunting, particularly when it comes to the subject of health,” said Dr Sneh Khemka, medical director for Bupa International. "These health guides will help people to prepare for their move to Singapore or Hong Kong and offer them detailed information about hospital and treatment options there.

"Healthcare systems can vary enormously from one place to another so it’s vital to be prepared for any eventuality before you move or travel abroad. These health guides give an overview of the situation in Singapore and Hong Kong but you should always seek advice from an expert if you have a serious medical condition."

Bupa International’s website also includes expatriate guides to other countries. The guides offer advice on culture and cost of living in various countries as well as other information such as how people can ship their belongings when relocating to a foreign country.


Bupa International pioneered expatriate health insurance in 1971 and today is one of the leading expatriate health insurers in the world.  It provides international health insurance to customers in 190 countries including some of the world’s largest and most well-known companies. It offers customers access to more than 200,000 medical providers worldwide and can settle bills directly with over 7,500 hospitals and clinics. 

The company is headquartered in Brighton, England, and has a worldwide emergency medical centre staffed by a team of experienced, multi-lingual advisers and offer customers support and advice 24 hours a day, every day. 

Bupa International has achieved a number of accolades over the last 40 years, including winning the Queen's Award for Enterprise for its achievements in international trade three times.

PR Contact:

Kristian Polack
Bupa International
Palaegade 8
1261 Copenhagen K
45 33 15 30 99

Sunday, 4 December 2011 reveals British holidaymakers abandoning the Eurozone in favour of domestic breaks, the website tour consolidator, has found that the recent civil unrest, economic crisis and poor exchange rates in the Eurozone are having a negative impact for Europe in terms of Brits choosing to take their holidays there, with many opting to stay closer to home and holiday in the UK instead.

This will appease VisitEngland which has recently launched a three-year project to encourage Britons to take more short breaks and holidays at home and in turn increase the availability of jobs within the Tourism Sector especially in those areas hit by economic challenges.

Recent research by the coach holidays operator has also shown that many British tourists are resorting to tightening their money belts as the cost of living continually rises whilst salaries continue to stagnate. As a result, many are considering foregoing their usual annual break. This year, a recent survey at the World Travel Market showed that only 59% took a holiday with 5% opting to forego their holiday. More than a quarter (26%) said that the increased costs of travelling, owing to taxes, was a major issue with 31% saying that they would travel less often than they used to.

Rachel Jones, Online PR & Marketing Co-ordinator at said: "Since the economic crisis hit the Eurozone we have noticed that there are fewer people looking to book coach holidays to Europe and we have put this down to poor exchange rates and the fragility of the Euro. The recent civil unrest in countries such as Greece is also having a negative impact on holidays to Europe with many Brits preferring to stay in the UK."

Looking at recent figures, has seen a significant rise in searches for UK breaks with 5821 visits compared to only 1175 visits for France. This certainly shows that Brits are taking hold of their personal finances and looking for cheaper options when it comes to holidays preferring to avoid the poor exchange rates of Europe and stay at home instead.
With more people staying at home, some are even shunning the whole idea of a holiday and opting for day trips out instead, although this in turn can also prove to be an expensive choice with hidden extras bumping up the price of a trip to the theme park. It costs a family of four on average £93 to visit a theme park and that's without the cost of food, drink and the endless queues for rides during peak season.

Rachel concluded: "I think it's fair to say that Brits are being priced out of the Eurozone when it comes to holidays. Although hotels in Greece have cut their rates due to the civil unrest there, other countries such as Italy, Spain and Ireland have seen their prices increase year-on-year. It is also having a negative impact on some travel companies with many experiencing financial woes due to the lack of interest for holidays to Europe and North African destinations with many Brits being cautious and abandoning these for domestic breaks instead. I think it’s fair to say that the longer the economic crisis continues, the more 'staycations' will be booked."

FACTFILE: is a consolidation of national and regional tour operators creating a diverse choice of UK, European and worldwide touring holidays including coach holidays to France, New Year breaks and Christmas breaks, holidays in to Scotland and England, day trips, mini cruises and holidays by air to many exciting destinations. All have live availability and offer the customer the opportunity to book online, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. features over 35 operators, including Travelsphere and Leger Holidays.