With winter well and truly on the way, many people will be thinking about jetting off to warmer climes for Christmas, or even New Year.
But if you have a limited budget, how can you save money on what could be a very indulgent winter break? Book in advance? Look for cheap package holiday deals?
There has been a massive growth in the luxury travel market over the last 12 years, and while the ongoing recession has had an effect on the industry, every savvy traveller knows that travel companies will create a supply that meets the demand of their customers. Thus, to avoid excess, airlines will slash the prices of their flights, and luxury hotels will cut the cost of all their rooms and suites. So, a winter holiday is entirely within your budget. You just need to decide where to go.
Here are five ideas to get you started planning an affordable yet luxurious winter holiday.
A firm favourite with travellers and holidaymakers alike all year round, the Caribbean offers sun, sea, sand and just about everything else they could want from a winter holiday. With so many islands to choose from, including Jamaica, the Bahamas, Trinidad and Tobago and Aruba, the growth of the luxury holiday industry in the Caribbean has been phenomenal, and many luxury resorts and hotels are available to holidaymakers.
A firm favourite with Brits, Thailand’s luxury hotels and resorts are renowned for superior service, dining and relaxation. While Thailand is perhaps better known as a cheap and cheerful backpacking destination, it’s luxury holiday industry has risen in popularity over recent years, with many backpackers opting to go for a more upmarket stay during their time in the country.
When it comes to luxury and excess, few countries do it as well as Dubai, which is home to Burj Khalifa, currently the tallest building in the world and the planet’s only seven-star hotel, Burj Al Arab. (Some people dispute that number.) Nestled in the heart of the Middle East, Dubai is probably as famous for its shops, restaurants and marinas as it is for its luxurious hotels and reclaimed land, the most famous of which is the Palm Islands. A great place for all the family, travellers are advised to observe the local laws and customs as Dubai is a very conservative country, so alcohol is strictly prohibited.
Perhaps one of the most famous beach destinations in India, Goa, located in the south west of the country, is famous for its Portuguese heritage, which has infiltrated many parts of the region’s culture, from cooking and art, to architecture and language. Visitors can choose from luxury resorts or much more private hillside retreats, or choose to escape into the smaller villages in the region, where the locals are friendly and hospitable, and the weather is warm and wonderfully summer-like.
It’s worth remembering that when it’s winter in the UK, it’s summer in Australia, and the weather will be hot, and the beaches and sea will be perfect for sunbathing and even snorkelling. Head to the Gold Coast to experience real winter sun this Christmas, or choose to jet into the north of the continent to explore the Great Barrier Reef and the many islands and sites that surround the area. These activities are great for families with small children, and young couples on that first romantic holiday.
Getting some winter sun doesn’t have to be impossible, as lots of people can still afford to fly out of the UK and into warmer climates despite a limited budget. So, keep an eye out for cheap package holidays this winter, and you never know where you may end up.