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This has been a hard year for travellers, what with the volcanic ash cloud and the British Airways strike, but now summer is here, the skies have cleared and with holiday sales on the increase make sure your holiday is a happy one by following these five top tips.
It is important to ensure that your holiday has ATOL Protection. This means that your holiday is covered in case anything goes wrong. Some airlines will only give ATOL if a full package holiday is being purchased, so it is best to check with a travel agent before you buy.
Craig Carroll from KingWorld Travel said: “People swear by booking on the internet and you must check you get full protection before you buy, but there’s a lot of small print there you have to check out.”
Travel insurance is a must as you can be hit with expensive medical bills or the cost of replacing your belongings abroad. Craig would recommend making sure your holiday is covered on the day you book it by booking with a travel agent in case anything goes wrong between booking the holiday and actually travelling.
He said: “A lot of people travelling in the EU think they don’t need insurance I’m covered by my card, but travel insurance covers a lot more then just medical. It covers you if you have to cancel if someone back home gets ill and you have to fly home in an emergency it also covers all your possessions."
Many countries now require visas make sure you have a valid visa to travel or you will not be eligible to enter the country. There are also countries that have a rule about how long your British passport is in date, you will not be allowed to travel to that country if your passport is outwith that time frame.
Craig said: “Every country is different, for example Turkey has a six months validity on your passport. Ask your local travel agent what the requirements are for each country before you buy your trip.”
Travelling with low cost airlines can be a good idea for a short trips but travelling with more than hand luggage can be expensive and the extra cost like credit card charges and insurance can bump up the original price quoted considerably.
Craig said: “Low cost airlines have a lot of hidden costs, one airline in particular charges £70 peak season for 15 kilograms of luggage. The lead in price is great but then there are lots of extras.
“Also, people book these flights direct from the company’s website and there is no protection on the flights what-so-ever.” He added.
There are many ways to get your travel money including the local currency, traveller’s checks and Cash Passports. Many companies will insure traveller’s checks but not cash so you have to check and make sure your money will be safe abroad.
Craig said: “The Cash Passport is good, it works like a debit card. You can charge to it in shops and take out money from cash machines at no extra cost.”