uk to europe

Newsletter - August 2005

Welcome
to the August issue of our newsletter and a special welcome to all our new suscribers.

Some of you may have noticed that we did not publish a July edition. Sorry but time got away from us due to everyone taking it 'in turns' to succumb to a really bad dose of flu - and to the client who sent in a couple of packets of 'Chicken noodle soup' as the 'best medicine'...Thank you, your gesture brightened our week !!

In future the newsletter will be distributed every 6 weeks...
We welcome your correspondence and comments.


Our contact email address is: info@ukandeuropetravel.com for all correspondence . To unsubscribe, please just send us an email with the word "Unsubscribe" in the subject line.


To our northern hemisphere clients - 'Enjoy your summer' and to the southerners - keep warm !

In this issue:

Earlybirds: Earlybirds catch the worm and save money!
The Budget Airlines: Updated information for UK/Europe and USA
Motorhomes in the USA: Specials
Motorhomes in the USA / Canada - mileage is important!
Canal & River boat specials: Everything is on special
Call us from the UK - Just the cost of a call to London
Motorhomes in Europe: Fantastic German Earlybird deals
Our Trivia Competition: Keep those entries coming! Closes 31Aug05
Holiday Cooking: Easy one pot meals
Travel Insurance: Don't leave home without it.
Travelling to Ontario, Canada - here is the info you need
The Positives & Negatives of rail travel in Europe


Earlybirds:  Earlybirds catch the worm , save money and get what they want!
If you know you want to travel in Europe or UK next year, we are offering  2005 rates for travel in 2006 for most Motorhome & canal boat products if you book and pay a deposit  by 30September 2005.   All that is required is a deposit. The balance is only due 6 weeks prior to pick up. Again, we cannot emphasize strongly enough that next year is going to very problematic in terms of getting availability. You have World Cup Soccer and Tour de France on...and judging by the number of bookings we already have for this period - there will be a lot of people who miss out on motorhomes. They really are an ideal way to travel and follow something that keeps changing venues.

The Budget Airlines:  Updated information for UK/Europe and USA
We are happy to report that we have lots of positive feedback since our  January newsletter article on Budget airlines and a lot of money has been saved.
See  http://www.ukandeuropetravel.com/jan_05.shtml#airline 

Since then,  we have accumulated a lot of additional info.  So these are some of the engines that search multiple low cost airlines in the UK and Europe.
We always suggest using these to find which airlines fly where and then you can go onto the individual airline if need be.


http://www.flylowcostairlines.org
http://www.gooflight.com 
http://www.wegolo.com
Other individual airlines:
http://excelwairways.com (UK to Europe)
http://volareweb.com (UK to Italy)

In the USA  - these are some of the budget airlines:
http://www.airtrain.com  (Eastern USA)
http://www.allegiantair.com (Between East Coast and Las Vegas)
http://www.americawest.com (flights from many cities all over USA)
http://www.flyfrontier.com - (all over the USA)
http://www.jetblue.com  (from JFK all over USA)
http://www.midwestexpress.com (all over USA)
http://www.iflyswa.com (Southwest Airlines)
http://www.spiritair.com (mostly eastern USA and LAX and Las Vegas)
http://www.suncountry.com ( 31 locations across USA from Minneappolis) 

Motorhomes in the USA - Winter & Summer Specials
With El Monte, pick up between 01November05 and 31March06 (last return by 30Apr06) and you can choose from one of the following options: 50% off 500 mile packages OR purchase unlimited mileage for only USD$400 (30 night maximum, thereafter $25 per night) OR free personal conveniene kits and vehicle kit OR have early pick up.

With Moturis, who have terrific tax inclusive rates with 60 miles per day included - if you travel between 01November 2005 and 31March 2006, you can have a free one way between any of their depots.

Cruise America, have just released their Flex rates & Earlybird Offers for 2006....so why not let us do the hard work and compare all the options for you.

Go West, Canada - Huuuge Earlybird discounts apply!! These vehicles sell quick

Don't forget all bookings over one month qualify for a free National Parks Pass !

Hot off the Press!! Great Earlybirds discounts have just arrived for ALL our USA and Canada companies . It will take a few days to get them loaded onto our website but send us your travel plans and we will match you up with the best deal....

Motorhomes in the USA / Canada - mileage is important!
In the USA and Canada, vehicles generally come with no mileage included (Moturis in the USA is the exception). So calculating your mileage is important as you will be paying for each mile or km.
In the USA you can generally buy packs of 500 miles at USD$115 each but if you are planning on travelling big distances, it may be better to go for unlimited mileage packs. This is where it gets a bit tricky!! El Monte have unlimited mileage at USD$900 for up to 30 nights, but Cruise America have unlimited mileage for USD$ 600 but for up to 21 nights...(Extra days of unlimited mileage are available for both) or El Monte have 'All inclusive' packages where every day, irrespective of length, includes unlimited mileage as well as kits and other bits and bobs, which makes it very attractive for shorter rentals.
You have the same sort of 'dilemma' in Canada. In short - it pays to work out your mileage, just roughly. It is also better to sometimes 'under-purchase' your mileage packs as unused mileage is not refunded.
We make it a heap easier for you... tell us your estimated mileage or give us your rough routing and we'll work out the best deal from the myriad of mileage options. Incidentally, you can use http://www.mapblast.com to work out your point to point mileage, get directions and maps...

Canal & River Boat Specials
Book a Nicols boat by 31 August and get a 5% discount on 2005 rates for travel in 2006 !
Book a France Passion Canal boat and get a 5% discount on 2005 rates for travel in 2006. Offer becomes void when new rates received.
Crown Blue Line - get a 5% Earlybird discount if you reserve your boat now.
Locaboat - 5% discount on 2005 rates
European Waterways - 5% off all 2006 rates for bookings received by 31August 05
Black Prince in UK - 5% off 2005 rates for travel in 2006 + 2nd week half price
Amadeus Waterways - 7.5% discount for all 2006 bookings made by 31August 05
Get additional discounts when you rent 2 or more boats or have a 2 week trip ...
We have also just ordered a bunch of DVD's on canal boat trips in the UK as well as 2 on travel in Europe.
If you are in Australia and interested in borrowing these, just let us know.

Call us from the UK and USA - In the interests of providing better customer service - if you live in the UK - we now have a London telephone number which you can call ...the only problem is that due to the time difference you would have to call us between 0700-0900hrs or stay up until 11.30pm .. you can try at other times and later as we often work late and will answer the phone if we are here. The number is 020-7193 0874.

Motorhomes in Europe - Fantastic German Earlybird deal
We have received confirmed 2006 rates with McRent. If you book by 31Jan06, you will get a 5% earlybird discount and if your rental is between 14 to 21 days, get an additional 3% longterm discount and if it is more than 21 days, get a 5% longterm discount. These are the Best Prices in Europe....For more details etc click on
McRent Motorhomes Germany

Our Trivia Competition:

QUARTERLY COMPETITION... closes 31Aug05
Trivia is back! By popular demand - we've brought back the trivia questions.
This quarters prize: We're going to go with travel vouchers as the postage is costing more than the prizes!!
This quarter, we'll draw 3 x $150 vouchers which you can use towards anything you purchase from our site.
Send your answers by email to info@ukandeuropetravel.com

1. Where would you find Mount Rushmore?
2. Which is the longest river in the world?
3. The Eurostar travels between ? and ?
4. In which city would you find the statue of Eros?
5. If a friend invited you to the Oktoberfest - which city would you be visiting?

Holiday cooking - One Pot Meals
Pot roasted chicken and Potatoes
8 Chicken pieces eg. legs, thighs, breast or enough for everyone
2 cloves of garlic
1 onion cut in wedges
4 potatoes peeled, sliced 3cm thick
Soy sauce, salt and pepper

Heat a bit of oil in pan and give the chicken a bit of a fry together with the garlic
When brown, add a cup of water and a good few shakes of soy sauce, salt and pepper.
Put the sliced potatoes on top, put the lid on and let it cook for 20 mins
Check
after 15 minutes to see if you need to add a bit more water. (enough to make gravy)
When chicken is cooked and potatoes are soft, stir it around and thicken the gravy with a bit of cornflour
.
Re-check seasoning and add chicken stock or gravy granules etc as required.
Serve with salad or veggies or bread rolls.

Travel Insurance - Don't leave home without it!
An essential part of travelling is taking travel insurance. If you can't afford travel insurance, you can't afford to go! Horror stories abound where clients have not taken travel insurance. Having a heart attack in the USA can bankrupt you - and heaven forbid you are stuck in a remote outpost with only a 'tribal doctor' on hand. Having travel insurance can see you airlifted to nearest hospital.
Australian and New Zealand clients are also fortunate enough to be able to obtain travel insurance which covers 'Rental vehicle insurance excess' which means that they do not need to take out the optional CDW (collision damage waiver ) options with the rental companies. For our USA and Canadian clients, please check with your credit card companies. Some of them include this Rental vehicle insurance excess waiver when you pay by credit card. We have tried to find similar cover for our South African and UK clients and unbelievably, nothing seems to exist that will cover the excess on motorhomes. If anyone can shed any light, we'll be thrilled to hear from you.

Travel insurance costs the same whether you take it a year before you go or the day you leave, however you are only covered when the policy is issued, so this is one instance where it does not pay to procrastinate. The minute you are paying a deposit for a holiday item, pay for your travel insurance. We strongly believe this is so essential that we are quite happy to offer you discounted travel insurance when you book any product with us.

Travelling to Ontario, Canada? Here's the info you need!

The gateway cities of Ontario are Toronto, Niagra region, Algonquin, Thunder Bay
Ontario is home of over 270 Provincial Parks, six National parks and 250 000 lakes and in July each year, an Elvis Festival held in the small town of Collingwood which is attended by 70 000 visitors plus!! If Elvis is not your scene, then each September you can attend the Toronto International Film Festival, the world's third largest.

Toronto: Dont miss Toronto Zoo- over 280 hectares and more than 5000 animals in natural settings; The Royal Ontario Museum which is Canada's largest; Ontario Place - recreational complex on the lakeshore; Queen Street East - trendy neighbourhood with shops, restaurants and beaches. (Don't miss the Beaches International Jazz festival every July). If it's shopping you want- the St Lawrence market which has been fedding up the locals for the past 170 years is not to be missed; Yorkville is for designer shopping and you'll spot Prada, Chanel, Armani and Gucci... If its souvenirs you want head to Queen's Quay Terminal on the harbourfront and if all that shopping makes you hungry, tempt your tastebuds at one of over 7000 restaurants in Toronto.

If you're heading to the capital, Ottawa, why not check out the 'changing of the Guard' at Parliament Hill, home of Canada's government. This happens late June to late August. You can have a free walking tour of the inside of the building. If it's nature you want, visit Gatineau Park which it's 36 000 hectares of woods, lakes, hiking trails and beaches for swimming and camping or take the easy way out and board the Hull-Chelsea-Wakefield Steam train along the banks of the Gatineau river and park. You can also experience the thrill of whitewater rafting near Beachburg which is one hour west of Ottawa. In winter, go ice-skating on the Rideau Canal which becomes the longest skating rink in the world.

You can't go to Ontario without visiting Niagra Falls...Brave the Whirlpool Jet Boat which speeds through the stone walled canyon of the Niagara Gorge and lets you feel the power of the swirling whirlpool currents. There is so much to do....take a helicopter ride, experience Imax theatre, or the Niagara Spanish Aero Car which travels over the rapids and gorge suspended by sturdy cables or shop at over 40 brand name outlets at Canada One Factory outlets. It all this sounds like 'too much' excitement, chill out one of more than 45 wineries on the Niagra peninsula.
Or hire a car and drive on the Niagra Parkway, 42km of glorious parks and gardens once described by Winston Churchill as the 'prettiest Sunday afternoon drive in the the world;. If Art is your thing, why not canoe your way into Ontario's old growth forests where you can sketch, paint, sculpt or photograph your adventure. Programs are for new and seasoned artists and include pottery, woodcarving, willow furniture construction, gem stone transformation etc. Visit http://www.artsinthewild.com

Dont miss....
Niagara Grape and Wine Festivals, mid Jan/mid June/late September. See http://www.grapeandwine.com
Winterlude: Feb each year. Ottawa winter playground with loads of activities and ice and snow sculptures
Stratford Festival of Canada: Set in Stratford. http:// www.stratford-festival.on.ca
Algonquin Provincial Park - http://algonquinpark.on.ca . Ontario's oldest provincial park, just 3 hours from Toronto.
St Jacobs, 90 minutes froom Toronto. Home to over 100 shops, services and restaurants plus a vibrant Farmers Market with over 600 vendors.

A heap more info available on http://www.ontariotravel.net

The Positives and Negatives of Travelling by Train in Europe
The Positives:
1. Quick and easy to travel between cities. Trains are frequent, especially on popular routes. So good if you want to see the main cities and have a limited amount of time.
2. Avoids ‘getting to airport’ problems, long check-in queues and busy airports.
3. If comparing with a car or motorhome, you’re avoiding parking problems; the problems with navigation and getting lost.
4. You can sit back, relax and view the scenery or be sociable and chat to fellow travelers picking up sightseeing tips and learning about different cultures.
5. In some places hotels or hostels are located close to stations and if there is a few of them, competition could see attractive rates on offer. Or you could sleep on the train. Modern trains are fast, efficient and can now be quite luxurious and there are many overnight trains with proper cabins, beds and amenities.
6 If you are on rail pass type of ticket you often get bonuses included eg. Discounted hotel rates, discounted car rates, free domestic train or bus usage, free or discounted ferry trips etc. Please pay careful note though as some 'freebies' require the use of a travel day.

The Negatives
1. T
rains go from city to city . Popular attractions or places you may want to visit could be way ‘off the tracks’, which means walking or taking busses or taxis which does add to the overall cost of your travels.
2. If you are using one of the Eurail type passes you will find that almost all ‘sleeper’ and high speed ‘premier’ trains require that you pay supplements. If you use a hotel or night train for a overnight trip, for example Paris to Madrid, you will be missing some magnificent scenery and unless you are paying a big supplement for a bed, you’re going to arrive a bit ‘train-lagged’. If I am doing a train trip, I’m pretty aware of my belongings and can’t seem to have a deep sleep as I’m conscious of pick pockets and opportunistic thieves.
3. Sometimes hotels and hostels are located further from the station necessitating a long walk, bus or taxi trip. Hotels away from the city center often offer better value.
4. You must travel lightly as your back will be carrying your pack –or you can use one of those nifty wheelie suitcases!
5. You are not as ‘free’ as when you have a car because you are bound by a timetable to a certain degree. Yes, trains are frequent but you can not detour as easily especially if you have pre-booked a hotel.
6. Cost: If you are a family or 3 or more persons, train travel is probably going to cost you more than a car, but again it depends on a variety of factors ie. From which country you are starting your trip etc.

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