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Lapland – Overall thoughts

Wow!This review is the final part of a series about my experience of my first ever package holiday – a trip to Lapland. You can find out more about the trip here.

When people tell me they are going on a package holiday I imagine scenes from Sun, Sea and Suspicious Parents along wth images that are indelibly etched on my brain from a season working at Butlins, when at 10am, the parents are a few pints down with a cigarette in one hand and a drink in the other and their kids are running wild. I know that I shouldn’t have these images but there you have it.

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Toboganning, Reindeers and Huskies Lapland

ReindeerThis review is part of a series about our experiences of our first ever package holiday – a trip to Lapland. You can find out more about our trip here. This section is written by MrsTravelFreak.

On the second day of our trip we took a 20 minute trip to a huge woodland area. When we arrived, we followed our own guide and the groups passed around various activities. We did tobogganing first. Although this was basically sliding down a hill, it was very well organised, a man was there to help everyone on the sledge and give them a push. Everyone got at least a couple of shots and the queueing didn’t appear substantial. The kids all played in the snow while they were waiting and Lee (our tour guide) encouraged them to have a snowball fight with him.

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Cosmos Concierge – A true customer-centric facility

Wow!This review is part of a series about my experience of my first ever package holiday – a trip to Lapland. You can find out more about our trip here.

I received a small brochure in the post (about three weeks before departure) that laid out my itinerary and provided check-in times etc. along with a list of useful things to pack. I particularly liked ‘it can be as low as -30 degrees. We cannot emphasise the importance of packing properly, particular for young children’!

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My First Package Holiday – A trip to Lapland

Small scared man at laptopI am not a package holiday kind of guy. I like to be in control of everything and the general idea of being the same as everybody else scares me.

All of that said, there are some trips that don’t really work well with the DIY approach. One of these trips was to Lapland in December 2014. I first noticed the deal on Secret Escapes, which displayed a saving of almost 40% against the list price with Cosmos. I discovered that the airline used for the trip (Monarch Airlines) is actually owned by Cosmos and subsequently, I was simply unable to purchase a seat on these charter flights if I wasn’t part of the package gang. I held my breath and entered my credit-card details and in a moment I was joining the many millions of people who travel each year on a package trip.

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The truth about budget flights!

For anyone that has booked a 50p Ryanair flight from London Stansted this will make you laugh – or cry.  For everyone else, this tells the true story of budget airline travel.

(The humor is adult with some language to match).


One World Sapphire benefits with BA? Not much it seems

BA looking after the £'s!I received a last minute request to meet with a client in London last week.  Looking at Skycanner, it seemed that an EasyJet / BA combo from Edinburgh to Gatwick was the cheapest that matched the times I needed.  There was a BA option (returning from Heathrow) for an extra £16, which seemed to make sense – my EasyJet Plus membership recently ran out and I expect I would have spent that much on Speedy Boarding.

I booked my flights with BA and added my Cathay Pacific Gold card details.  This is One World Sapphire, which is equivalent to Silver Exec Club.  I should have lounge access along with the ability to select my seats at the time of booking free of charge along with using business check-in counters.

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Gatwick Express price ‘freeze’ not quite as ‘cool’ as you may think

Not really Frozen!OK – time for another rant!  As a frequent traveller to London Gatwick, I use Gatwick Express from time to time.

Gatwick Express takes you from Gatwick into London’s Victoria station while Southern and First Capital Connect will take you into London Bridge and St Pancras respectively.  The journey takes around 30 minutes with all operators. For a standard class ‘Anytime’ fare, Gatwick Express charge you £19.90 for the journey, Southern £10.70 and First Capital Connect just £10 – with a saving of almost 50% over Gatwick Express.

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Travel Pony – A new hotel booking company

Share the Pony!I first heard of Travel Pony a while back when I saw a friend had posted on Facebook that they saved some money on hotels.  The idea behind Travel Pony is that you do all of their marketing work for them (i.e. tell people about the site) and in return they give you some of their marketing budget back as a discount on hotel rooms.  Power to the people and all of that.  I saw an ad for it online the other day so decided I would give it a try for an upcoming trip to Madrid in July for MrsTravelFreak and I.

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An unusual way to save money on hotel rates

UnusualI was looking for some hotels today for an upcoming trip to Europe when I discovered something pretty cool.

I use a number of sites when booking my trip including TrivagoTrivago is a site that compares a number of other travel sites I order to find the best price.  I have been using Trivago for years and it didn’t seem very popular in the UK, although with recent TV adverts I think it’s becoming more known now.

When searching for a hotel in Madrid I noticed something that I hadn’t seen before.  At first I thought it was an internal system test – a mistake – but in actual fact it was much better. Continue Reading…

2012 in review

As the year comes to an end, people start to reflect on the highs and lows of the year.  Perhaps it was most appropriate that today, as I thought about writing this post, I received my Skywards Gold welcome pack (send by FedEx nonetheless).

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