So, you’ve asked your family and friends for suggestions for one of the most expensive purchases you will make in any year! YOUR HOLIDAY. Yes, it’s true we discuss even the finer points of this mammoth spend with people whose lifestyle is nothing like our own!

WHY DO WE DO THAT? HOW CAN GETTING SUGGESTIONS FROM PEOPLE WHO HAVE DIFFERENT ASPIRATIONS, EXPECTATIONS AND BUDGET? Generally, perhaps we are being a tad lazy or just want to do one better in the holiday game!

So let’s get savvy.

1. When booking an escorted  tour check carefully as to what is included and optional. The less expensive price may have less included meals or included excursions. Check it out. You would go to Beijing without going to the Great Wall of China? So check if it is included or optional. You are going anyway, but better to know in advance!

2. Do you prefer a lovely view because the lower priced option may not crack it – check the small print! The more expensive option may not either – just because the photo has a sea view, it is just that – a photo of a hotel. Check your flight times! . eg: Most US sites may use 5A or 5P and not am or pm. Unsocial hours are always less expensive and the 13th of the month! You can save quite a bit at times but it could make you very tired if there are long layovers. Do the balance and then do the maths! I have just booked a Norwegian Airlines from Malaga to Fort Lauderdale via Gatwick for 66 sterling just because it was13th December. The day before and after were 400+. You get the idea…….Research, check and check again!

3. You have to do this on a regular basis – a few times a week to get the really best deals. Subscribe to several well known websites to keep up to date with current prices and deals. Likewise with airlines. Recently, I was researching Miami to Boston and I saw a good deal, nearly booked it, but thankfully, saw that only a small handbag was included. Hand luggage was 55 USD and even more for main luggage and similar or a booked seat. I did not take it. See what I mean? Do the maths!


Today, we are talking about the fascinating BERMUDA! Why should you go there, What’s to see? What’s to do? Read on, my friend……..

Bermuda is a British Overseas Territory and that means that Britain is responsible for Bermuda’s defence and general welfare. The islands, yes, I did say islands, sit on a long extinct volcano and this the entire caldera was once all above seas level forming just one island!. Nowadays, Bermuda consists of 181 islands within just 20.6 miles! Eight of the larger islands are connected by bridges, and are populated – so go explore!

Famously, Mark Twain referred to Bermuda as ‘Heaven’ and John Lennon was immediately taken by Bermuda’s beauty and culture and creatively spent much of his time writing music here.

For cruisers, you will berth at ‘Dockyard’ built by the British when they lost a battle in the American War of Independence and needed a new base. The whole area has been totally transformed keeping the original buildings and filling them with boutiques, art centres, pottery and glass works and a really stylish craft Market. Even the old officer’s quarters have been made in to homes. I want one! Where warships used to come to be repaired, small boats tie up at the marina just in front of the Tower Mall – a huge former warehouse ensures that your wallet becomes lighter. Lots of small shops, cute local items and eateries too.

For history enthusiasts, alongside the Dockyard area, remember to visit the Bermuda National Museum set within the 30 ft. high ancient walls of the fortress. Everything you have ever wanted to know about Bermuda is there! It was opened by our Queen Elizabeth back in 1975 during an official visit with Price Phillip.

The modern capital of Hamilton is just a 20 minute 5 dollar ferry boat ride away and the original historic capital of St. George with its delightful cobbled and colourful streets is around 40 minutes by local ferry. Bus transport is also good, but of course slower, and would take around two hours to arrive at St. George for example.

Currency is the US dollar on a par with the Bermudian Dollar, that is to say one to one! They will accept happily your credit cards, so it all made very easy for you!

And now a few words about the amazing water activities available – where do you start? Because Bermuda is surrounded by coral reefs, there are an exceptional amount of wrecks for divers and snorkellers to explore and this is easily organised. Likewise, the glass bottom boats will excite in every way. It is definitely worth checking out the Tourist office not far from the ship berth as they offer ‘tourist transfers’ to the beach and elsewhere at a decent price so pick up all the local info. Free wifi too!

The beaches are on the south coast around 40 mins or so by taxi and a hour or so by local bus. PINK SAND BEACHES! Another, not to be missed experience. Glorious crystal clear water, so relax an enjoy. A minor point – there are no WC’s or areas to get changed on most beaches. Who cares – you are in Bermuda! Whatever!

I am in the process of getting a travel block set up, so watch this space for fun and practical info!