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Turkey holidays among cheapest for 2019 after Turkish lira plummets against GBP | Travel News | Travel

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Turkey holidays are rocketing in popularity thanks to the low prices available in the Middle Eastern country. The annual Post Office Holiday Money Report revealed the renewed popularity of Turkey is the most striking travel trend of the year. This comes after the Turkish lira collapsed in value last year meaning Britons’ pounds can go further in Turkey, making for much cheaper holidays. “The lira fell steadily during the early months of 2018 but plummeted in value by 73 per cent in August, causing a stampede for late summer package deals,” explained the Post Office report.

“Post Office lira sales surged 368 per cent compared with August 2017, leading to an overall 2018 sale rise of 96 per cent.

As a result, the Turkish lira moved five places up the top 20 table [of Post Office best selling currencies in 2018] to fourth position.

The ongoing weakness of the Turkish lira means holidaymakers can expect their pounds to stretch almost 29 per cent further in Turkey than a year ago.

Marmaris, a Mediterranean resort town along the Turkish Riviera, is in the top three cheapest European beach destinations. Prices have fallen 18.7 per cent since last year.

According to Post Office figures, a cup of filter coffee costs just 96p in Turkey compared to £1.91 in Mexico or £2.30 in Greece.

A three-course meal (for two with a bottle of house wine) costs on average £30.34 in Turkey.

In the Costa del Sol, Spain it will set holidaymakers back £39.52 or £46.05 in Sliema, Malta.

“The continuing weakness of the Turkish lira is the obvious reason why the country is a hotlist choice for the second year running,” stated the report, “but Post Office pricing research has found that meal and drink costs remain low as well.

“This makes the Turkish Riviera the leading rival to Bulgaria’s Black Sea resorts.

“Travel analyst GfK’s latest intelligence underlines this, revealing that bookings are already up 65 per cent year-on-year for travel between April and December.”

Thomas Cook also reported an increase in holiday bookings to Turkey last year.

Post Office Travel Money expert Andrew Brown said: “Short travel times will always give European destinations an inbuilt advantage.

“Despite speculation that rising prices would put UK holidaymakers off travelling to the continent, strong currency sales for the euro, Turkish lira, Bulgarian lev and Croatian kuna over the past year underline the fact that Europe remains the destination of choice for most people.

“However, the stampede for Turkish holiday packages seen last summer sends a clear message that holidaymakers will be looking carefully to see where they can get the most bang for their buck and may be prepared to swap destination for a cheaper deal.”

Previously, The Foreign Office advised against travelling as terrorists were “very likely” to carry out attacks.

Most regions in the country are now deemed safe to travel, despite the threat of terrorism still in place.

Last year Turkey changed its visa application rules meaning British holidaymakers will have to apply for an e-visa before they travel rather than buying at the airport. 



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Cruise secrets: How ships protect against pirates revealed | Travel News | Travel

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Those on board experience the high life of voyages at sea, from comfortable cabins to a host of restaurants and leisure activities. The cruise staff work to keep the experience of the guests as pleasurable and stress free as possible. They are on-hand to offer advice and assistance, as well as to arrange excursions when passengers want to venture out onto land. Yet there is a hidden dark side to their time on board, which has now been revealed.

While there are mechanical issues that could go wrong with a ship, there are political problems that could affect the journey too although the risk is very minimal.

The last hijack happened in 2017, when Aris 13, was hijacked by pirates in two skiffs a few miles off Alula, yet this was the first hijacking of a large commercial vessel since 2012.

Those cruises that sail along the coats of Africa have been pinpointed as suffering particular risk.

This is because of what is deemed a “legitimate threat” by pirates.

Piracy off the coast of Somalia, Africa, has been a threat to international shipping since the Somali Civil War, in 2000.

Piracy experts have estimated that in 2008, pirates gained about $80million dollars through ransom payments.

A cruise insider has recently revealed the contingency plan for a pirate attack on a cruise ship.

They let slip: “To prepare for any eventuality, ships are often equipped with high-pressure water hoses and sonic cannons that can fire concentrated beams of sound capable of permanently affecting human hearing from over 900 feet away.”

Graeme Brooks, a former Principal Warfare Officer with the Royal Navy, spoke out about the pirate three and said the best method of defence is to disrupt the targeting process.

He said: “There are millions of square miles of water and you can only see vessels on the horizon up to 10 miles away. It’s like looking for a mouse on a rugby pitch.

“And it’s impossible to know whether a small craft is a threat or just fishermen. You can’t tell the difference between a weapon and a baguette at anything more than 200 yards.”

Water canons can be used to drench the pirate should they attempt to venture onto deck.

They could also serve to sink the pirate ships, which are typically smaller in size and weaker in frame.

The protective measures are described in the innocuously-titled document BMP4: “Best Management Practices for Protection Against Somalia-Based Piracy.”

Razor wires and electric barriers are also among the suggestions.

A terrifying video recently documented the moment weapon wielding pirates attempted to attack the Seabourn Spirit cruise ship.



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Best road trips in the world for a 2019 holiday revealed | Travel News | Travel

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Road trips have a romantic allure for some, offering an opportunity to explore a country’s top tourist hotspots as well as the hidden gems favoured by locals. Hiring a car and taking to the unknown roads teases adventure and a voyage into the unknown, prospects which top some traveller’s list of priorities. It also means there are no ties to a particular location so, if there’s nothing much to see in a particular town, they can move on swiftly. Worst case scenario, there’s always somewhere to stay, too, if accommodation plans fall through.

Budding explorers can also set their own agendas, not constrained to strict travel times and timetables.

Vehicle hire firm Rentalcars.com has now highlighted the top “breathtaking” routes for those craving a road trip of their own, with two of the top three found in America.

A survey of 2,000 adults placed Route 66 in the USA as the top road to take a trip down, for its stunning scenery and multiple Instagram snap opportunities.

Second place was granted to Australia’s Great Ocean Road while the Pacific Coast Highway, again in America, came third.

Meanwhile, the San Francisco to Los Angeles route in America came fourth with the first British entry coming for Scotland’s North Coast 500.

Isabel Williams, Head of Customer Insight at Rentalcars.com, said: “Holidaymakers are becoming increasingly tired of tourist traps and crave off the beaten track adventures instead.

“Road trips can be a great way to discover new places and with so many breath-taking roads to drive down, it’s no wonder a four-wheeled adventure is a popular choice for those planning their 2019 holidays.”

She added: ““Road trip holidays require proper planning, but they don’t have to be as expensive, as long, or as dramatic, as some of journeys made famous on the silver screens.

As well as Route66, one of our most popular destinations for road trip holidays in 2018 was Spain.

“And remember there are countries that drive on the same side of the road as us like Cyprus, Malta and Australia.”

Rounding off the survey was America’s Death Valley route in sixth, followed by Iceland’s Ring Road and Canada’s Alaska Highway.

Northern Ireland’s Causeway Coast Route was ninth.

Finishing off the top 10 was a road close to home, Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way.

A total of 32 per cent of those quizzed are planning to take a road trip in 2019.

Meanwhile, a quarter confuse they would be heading to somewhere they had never been before.

Top ten roads to take a trip down– as voted for by UK holidaymakers

1. Route 66, USA

2. Great Ocean Road, Australia

3. Pacific Coast Highway, USA

4. San Francisco to Los Angeles, USA

5. North Coast 500, Scotland

6. Death Valley, USA

7. Ring road, Iceland

8. Alaska Highway, Canada

9. Causeway Coast Route, Northern Ireland

10. Wild Atlantic Way, Ireland



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Royal travel: How Prince Philip ‘sneaked off’ during trips with Queen | Travel News | Travel

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The couple have visited everywhere from Commonwealth countries, European states and Africa, clocking up more than 120 destinations in their exciting royal destination visit list. Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, was a constant presence at the side of Queen Elizabeth II, who is the UK’s longest-serving monarch at the age of 92. He retired from royal duties on 2 August, 2017, before which he met members of the Royal Marines as his final engagement. This means the Queen has undertaken some recent Royal excursions alone.

Yet details have now emerged of the Duke of Edinburgh’s cheeky antics while on Royal tours with his wife.

It has been revealed the 97 year old “sneaked” away from the Queen’s side during some trips, including a particularly prominent visit to Australia.

In royal biographer Robert Hardman’s new book, Queen of the World, he describes a visit Down Under in 1954.

He wrote how Prince Philip “would rather be having a beer with his mates” due to his relaxed nature.

He then detailed an instance where the UK monarch was watching the racing, one of her favourite hobbies, in Randwick.

Yet instead of standing by her side, Prince Charles’ father, he said, “sneaked off to watch a match at Sydney Cricket Ground.”

He added how he “spurned a royal box in favour of the pavilion.”

Talking of the high levels of interest in the monarchy during the trip, Prince Philip later said: “It would have ben very easy to play to the gallery but I took a conscious decision not to.

“Safer not to be too popular.

“You can’t fall too far.”

Meanwhile, Prince Philip recently opened up on his feelings about travelling on specific airlines for royal visits overseas.

Members of the Royal family usually always fly commercial class, particularly when venturing abroad for a personal reason, or on official duties they make take a private jet.

The latter helps the monarch and her relatives build strong relationships between states.

Yet that didn’t stop Prince Philip from making his thoughts on Economy class – usually the cheapest form of ticket on an airline – very clear indeed.

Prince Philip previously announced to the Aircraft Research Association: “If you travel as much as we do, you appreciate the improvements in aircraft design of less noise and more comfort – provided you don’t travel in something called economy class, which sounds ghastly.”



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