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Spring is a popular time to visit Washington, D.C. As the temperatures rise following the cold winter months, the city comes alive with activities that people of all ages will enjoy. Dozens of events — including the National Cherry Blossom Festival, embassy tours, parades, and more — are held throughout the city during the springtime, making this season a great time to take advantage of everything the city has to offer.

National Cherry Blossom Festival

Image via Flickr by Anthony Quintano

Started in 1927, the National Cherry Blossom Festival takes place during March and April and lasts about four weeks. The celebration commemorates the blossoms that festoon the cherry trees and features parades, parties, and live performances that bring more than 1.5 million visitors to the District annually.

The opening ceremony kicks off the festival every year and is followed by the Blossom Kite Festival and the National Cherry Blossom Festival Parade. While the Tidal Basin is one of the most popular spots to take pictures of the blossoms, you can also find cherry trees at the National Arboretum, Anacostia Park, and the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden. Many of the festival’s events are free, making the National Cherry Blossom Festival a budget-friendly way to explore the city.

Passport D.C.

Passport D.C. is an annual, month-long event honoring the international cultures of Washington, D.C. Held in May, the celebration offers residents and visitors the opportunity to embark on a global journey without leaving the District.

More than 50 embassies, as well as several of the District’s cultural institutions, offer open houses, exhibitions, and workshops throughout the month. Guests can learn about the customs and cultures of the countries represented here. During the event, guests are invited to take free embassy tours, peruse the Flower Mart at the Washington National Cathedral, attend street festivals, and more.

Explore Historic Landmarks

Spring weather provides the perfect opportunity to explore the District’s many historic landmarks. While you’re strolling through the Tidal Basin admiring the cherry blossoms, make sure to visit the surrounding monuments. The Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial, Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial, and Thomas Jefferson Memorial are all located close by. Afterward, visit the Lincoln Memorial, Washington Monument, and Vietnam Veterans Memorial. Don’t miss Rock Creek Park, a large urban park in Northwest Washington, D.C., where you’ll find more than 32 miles of hiking trails, a planetarium, and several Civil War–era installations.

Washington, D.C., has much to offer any traveler. In fact, visitors to the area have many historic sites, cultural events, and remarkable restaurants to choose from, and it’s easy to become overwhelmed. To make sure you don’t miss anything, you can use a Washington, D.C., city guide to help you plan your itinerary. A city guide will help you prepare for your trip while relieving some of the stress involved with planning a vacation.

Washington, D.C., is a vibrant, dynamic city year-round, but the blue skies, cherry blossoms, and crisp temperatures make spring a great season to visit. The District offers a variety of festivals, cultural events, and celebrations that are sure to please people from all walks of life.

 

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Sardinia is one of Italy’s islands and an amazing holiday destination. Sardinia has something on offer for everyone, whether you are a beach goer, thrill seeker, history buff or are more into nature. Read on for information you need to know before heading to this idyllic Italian island. the down-low on what, when and where of Sardinia.

When to Visit Sardinia

You can visit Sardinia at pretty much any time of the year although the island can look a little drab over the winter months. However, September is actually the most recommended month to visit Sardinia and it’s not advised to visit Sardinia in August as that’s the time when many Italians go to the island for their holidays. Accommodation prices often rise and the beaches will be extremely busy during August. In September, the sea will be at its warmest and the biggest crowds will have left, perfect for a nice getaway, especially when you aren’t tied down by term breaks.

Where to Stay in Sardinia

The price of accommodation is very dependent on when you are planning to visit and whether you are coming with your family, just yourself and your partner, or a group of friends. For example, there are budget hotels available to make sure that you don’t break the bank to enjoy Sardinia’s sun. Some even have breakfasts and other meals included, so that’s one less worry. If you are travelling with a bigger group, you can consider renting a self-catered apartment. There are many operators offering self-catered apartments, and you can even check Airbnb to see if you can snag yourself an amazing deal. There are various family friendly resorts to consider that offer activities for everyone such as Mark Warner’s Perdepera Beach Resort: markwarner.co.uk/sun-holidays/sardinia/. They provide childcare from ages 1 to 17 with qualified nannies to supervise a host of activities. This ensures the parents can enjoy some time to themselves, hike one of Sardinia’s many trails or have a sailing lesson.

What to See in Sardinia

To see most of Sardinia, a car is highly recommended. Whether you have driven down in your own car, or you are renting a car, having a vehicle at the ready means you are free to go where you want, when you want. Public transportation is very ineffective on Sardinia and you are bound to lose more time travelling. Such a waste if you’re only there for a short break!

Sardinia has many beaches you can visit. There are even some amazing beaches that can only be reached by foot or boat. This means it will be less crowded than those beaches close to your hotel. Cala Goloritze is one of these beaches. It’s a small rocky beach on the west coast with the most amazing blue water.

You can also visit Cagliari, Sardinia’s historic capital city and also Sardinia’s biggest city. Here you’ll see vespas buzzing around streets and boulevards, busy cafes and beautiful arcades. Cagliari is a historic town with Roman ruins and old churches. Consider a visit to the archaeological museum, Museo Archeologico Nazionale, which showcases artefacts from thousands of years ago, including bronze figures. Other cities to visit include Olbia and Alghero, housing beautiful historic sights, gorgeous churches and delicious eateries.

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The great outdoors—it feels like a promise, in a way. A promise that, if you look hard enough, you’ll find the adventures you’ve always wanted in your life.

That’s what you’ll find when you spend less time inside and more engaged in outdoor activities. But where do you start? The vastness of the Rocky Mountains and the American West is intimidating for even seasoned recreationalists.

These four outdoors activities are great ways for you to begin your acquaintance with the outdoors and find the type of recreation that you most enjoy.

ATVs

ATVs, four-wheelers—the names are different but the experience is the same. ATV riding is hugely popular in the more arid areas of the West, especially in the sand dunes scattered throughout the Great Basin.

You certainly can spend a lot on a new ATV, but you don’t have to. And with ATV loans at great rates, you won’t have a problem financing the one you want.

Obviously, you’ll need to take safety courses, buy an approved helmet, and go riding with someone who knows ATVs before you decide if this is your jam or not.

Rock Climbing

When you think of rock climbing, you probably see outrageously high cliffs and a thin, tenuous rope connecting you to the wall.

Rock climbing is definitely a thrill, and it is extreme, but it’s not as reckless as it’s painted to be. Free climbers, like Alex Honnold, scale walls in Yosemite without ropes all the time. Rock climbing with ropes is fun, exhilarating, and a great workout.

Getting started is as simple as visiting a local climbing gym, signing up for a beginner’s course, and practicing indoors. If you find you like it, you can graduate to climbing outdoors. You’ll need a harness, anchors, carabiners, a helmet, and rope, but all of those items can be purchased at fairly affordable prices.

Fishing

If you have memories of sitting, bleary-eyed, on the bench seat of a truck as your dad and grandpa took you fishing, you’re not alone. A ton of us have that same memory, and we also remember not catching a lot while sitting at the lake.

Fishing is much more fun than you likely remember – especially fly fishing. Getting started is really cheap, and fairly simple. YouTube is littered with videos on how to fish, with instructional tutorials on creating certain rigs to learning how to fly fish.

It’s a relaxing sport, but one that puts you directly in contact with the outdoors and the natural world.

Kayaking

This is another activity that forces you to work with—instead of against—nature. Kayaking has exploded in popularity recently, with tons of lightweight kayak options available.

Floating down the huge rapids in wide Western rivers is a big draw for a lot of kayakers, though they can be used for other water activities as well. Fishing from a kayak is fun, as is paddling more relaxed water and letting the simple motions of rowing and steering melt away the worries of the day.

The outdoors is full of opportunity to lose yourself in nature and get a better perspective on what matters in life. These four activities will put you up-close and personal with nature, and help you decide what your favorite way to interact with the outdoors is.

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We all need a break every now and then, a break from the 9-5, from everyday life and the chance to truly unplug. If you’re guilty of constantly checking your emails, refreshing social media and having your phone almost surgically attached to your hand then you might want to consider a relaxing spa weekend to ease the stress and relax your mind. The spa is the perfect place to leave your phone in the locker, get settled into a fluffy robe and enjoy peaceful surroundings that are far more enjoyable than your usual mornings fighting for a spot on the tube. Oh the joys of the commute, hey?

With 1000’s of spas across the globe it can be hard to pinpoint which destination will offer you the most in terms of relaxation, facilities and décor. After all, you want to be able to enjoy beautiful surroundings whilst you take a dip in the pool or kick back in the sauna. Luckily for you, we’re making life that bit easier! We’ve rounded up our top spas around the globe, as tried and tested by the team. So, without further ado – our favourite resorts for ultimate tranquillity and wellness to rejuvenate mind, body and soul…

Bedford Lodge Hotel & Spa – Newmarket

Oh the English countryside! It’s a real treat and the perfect place to enjoy fresh air and plenty of open spaces. This luxury Suffolk hotel and spa is a real hub of tranquillity, and the perfect setting to allow your stresses to float away. This spa features an impressive array of facilities including their rooftop hot tub, private rasul as well as hydrotherapy pool, heat experiences and lavish relaxation areas. The spa menu offers an array of luxurious treatments, and that’s not the only menu that’s impressive at Bedford Lodge. The adjacent hotel offers exquisite dining options in their Roxana Bar and award winning Squires restaurant. Enjoy an eclectic range of dishes curated using delicious local produce. This spa and hotel is a real countryside treat!

Chedi Andermatt – Switzerland

Designed by Jean-Michael Gathy, this Swiss spa has a very Asian aesthetic and offers an abundance of style and character. Located just one hour from Zurich, this spa and hotel is seriously slick, and you won’t fail to be impressed on every corner you turn. Everything from lighting, heating to curtains are controlled by the flick of an iPad but be prepared to dig deep as rooms start at roughly £420 per night. The spa itself is a lavish affair, offering hydrotherapy pools, sauna, hammam, steam room and a plunge pool if you’re brave enough. The Chedi also has some fantastic dining options including authentic Japanese cuisine.

Lefay Resort & Spa – Lake Garda

Situated high above the beautiful waters of Lake Garda, this world class spa offers picturesque views and luxurious facilities. The area itself is a real gem, and if you’re looking to integrate your spa break with a holiday then this location is simply perfect. De-stress and breathe in the fresh sea air, this spa has a range of beautiful facilities including saunas, grottos and even a saltwater lake! Participate in a range of classes including yoga, pilates and thai chi, or why not grab a bicycle and spend the day exploring? This is the ideal resort of a combination of relaxation and activities!

Cheval Blanc – French Alps

Why not head to the French Alps for a relaxing trip of a lifetime? Cheval Blanc based in Courcheval offers a serene and calming environment. Make sure you’re prepared for some serious pampering, the spa offers pure indulgence and an impressive array of facilities. The fitness centre offers cutting edge equipment, private coaches and yoga courses available upon request.  There are plenty of opportunities to hit the slopes, offering the perfect contrast of activity and relaxation, alternatively you could ditch the skis and just enjoy a long weekend of luxury.

Sun Gardens – Dubrovnik

Croatia has seen an explosion in popularity over the past few years and it’s easy to see why! The area is naturally stunning and home to beautiful hotels and resorts. The five star Sun Gardens are the perfect destination if you want to kick back, relax and enjoy a treatment or two. Overlooking the sparkling Adriatic Sea, this is all about location, location, location!  The spa fuses nature and luxury into once harmonious offering, using only the finest natural ingredients. A dip in the Spa’s 18-,metre lagoon with waterfall sounds quite dreamy, doesn’t it?

If you’re feeling burnt out, tired and simply in need of a rest then a spa break can do you the absolute world of good! We all need a pamper every now and again so put down your smartphone and check in to one of these beautiful spa resorts!

 

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There are many reasons that UK residents want to move countries and explore more of the world outside of yearly holidays. Some of these reasons, to name a few, are the weather, job opportunities and of course, simply a fresh start. Whatever reason you have, if you are considering moving, it is a big decision and a drastic lifestyle change. So, as experts in this area, have done extensive research using information from reputable intergovernmental organisations such as the UN, World Bank and OCED, to give us the most accurate findings and help see which nations are indeed the best for those looking to make the move and become expats.

What we Did

In order to narrow down our list, we had to decide on a specific data set. Our data set covered a variety of different aspects that may affect day-to-day life.

We narrowed down all the countries in the world to the 18 we felt were most popular with UK expats to start with. These 18 include Spain, Australia and the USA, as well as other locations like Mexico, Brazil and India.

In total, we looked at 11 different data sets for all 18 countries. These included: income tax levels, average net incomes, real wages, education ranking, property price to income ratio, crime and unemployment levels, healthcare efficiency, English proficiency and food costs. These stats gave us strong indications on a wide range of factors that directly affect quality of life.

After gathering the data, we began to analyse the stats to see which countries stood out and in which areas they performed strongest. We took what we found and compared it against the UK to see what the similarities and differences are between our nation and those overseas, to ultimately find the ideal location for potential UK expats to relocate to.

Finally, with a combination of these numbers and figures and our thorough research from sources including the OECD, United Nations, World Bank, Bloomberg and more, we ranked the data by the most favourable results.

 

What we Uncovered

Before we reveal which country hit the top spot, some of the more notable information that we discovered includes:

The USA has the lowest property price to income ratio, making US real estate much more affordable than that of the UK.

India’s food is the cheapest, it has the lowest cost of food per head in the average weekly shop equating to £86.62* for a family of four, compared to £174.74 in the UK

Singapore has the most efficient healthcare and the best education, meaning less waiting times and higher grades than in UK schools

Norway has the highest GDP per capita and the highest level of English proficiency out of the countries which don’t list English as an official language, with 68% of the population able to effectively read, write and hold a conversation in English

Ireland overall shares the most similarities to the UK, with similar income, temperature, healthcare and education rankings

The Results

Overall, Singapore was found to be the best option for UK expats, with the lowest crime rankings and most efficient healthcare. In last place was India, with low income and high crime.

  1. Singapore
  2. Canada
  3. Australia
  4. United Arab Emirates
  5. USA
  6. Norway
  7. Ireland
  8. Germany
  9. New Zealand
  10. Japan
  11. France
  12. Spain
  13. Russia
  14. China
  15. Brazil
  16. South Africa
  17. India

 

Author:

Jim Limerick

Bio:

1st Move international are an international removals company based in the UK

 

 

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Is there a special trip on your bucket list?  Consider exploring the wonders of North Carolina. From the stunning vistas of the Appalachian Mountains to the blue waters of the Crystal Coast, North Carolina is one of the most stunning states in the country.  Take advantage of the awesome deals offered by Groupon coupons and ramp up your vacation wardrobe with selections from Aeropostale, pack your bags and hit the road for a vacation of a lifetime.

Start your trip in the scenic college town of Asheville. Nestled in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, Asheville is a food lover’s delight. From farm to table restaurants to food trucks, there’s something for every palette in Asheville.  Plan on a side trip to Biltmore Estates; the nation’s largest private home. The grounds are just spectacular and the interior is full of antiques and architectural wonders.

Continue east to the Piedmont Triad cities of Greensboro, Winston-Salem and High Point. Known for furniture and textiles, the Piedmont also boasts some of  North Carolina’s best bar-b-que. Music festivals, performing arts and parks can all be found in Greensboro and Winston-Salem’s downtown areas. The state zoo, Natural Science Center and Children’s Museum are all huge draws for visiting families. The state capital, Raleigh, is just one hour east of Greensboro. Raleigh, Chapel Hill and Durham are the cities known as the Triangle. Some of the nation’s top universities are found in the Triangle. A huge selection of museums, restaurants and Greenway trails can all be explored during your trip to the Triangle.

Wrap up your trip by selecting one of the beach towns on the Crystal Coast. Emerald Isle, Pine Knoll Shores & Atlantic Beach are all bucolic beach towns with a small town flair. Spend the day on the beach building sand castles and plan to catch the delicious blue crab for dinner. From marsh views to the inter-coastal waterways, the Crystal Coast is a beach lover’s paradise. Welcome to North Carolina!

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While this city nestled between Dallas and Fort Worth isn’t the biggest or most traveled to of the three, Arlington appeals to travelers with its delightful small town Southern charm and its sports venues. But aside from the popular Arlington attractions, like seeing a Rangers or Cowboys game, what else is there to do?

From tasty hole-in-the-wall restaurants to a weekly runners group, we’ve got the unique things for you to see, do and try in and around Arlington.

Arlington Attractions

The Runners of Arlington

 

[Source: The Runners of Arlington Facebook]

 

Arlington isn’t just a place to watch sports; it’s a place that lets you get active as well. Every Tuesday and Thursday night people meet at the Runner Shop at 7 p.m. It’s not a group you have to join or be part of year-round. You just show up and run. The courses are two miles and more, and people of all pace levels, both locals and travelers, are welcome to run.

 

The Boomstick

[Source: Texas Ballpark Boomstick Facebook]

 

This isn’t a place—although it’s almost big enough it could be. It’s a giant hot dog you can only get inside Globe Life Park. So if your travels put you in Arlington when the Rangers are in town, then go to a game and try this monstrous dog. Even if you aren’t a sports fan, this two-foot-long, one-pound all beef hot dog smothered in chili, nacho cheese and grilled onions is a sight to see and the best ballpark dog you’ll ever eat.

 

Fort Worth Water Gardens

 

[Source Rodney—Flickr]

 

Located just outside of Arlington in Fort Worth, this Texas oasis is worth the short drive. See waterfalls cascading down walls, a serene meditation pool and the Active Pool, where thousands of gallons of water constantly rush down 38 feet of steps that plummet into a vortex. It’s especially refreshing on a hot summer’s day, but you can check out the Water Gardens anytime of the year.

 

Arlington Eats 

Damian’s Cajun Soul Café

 

[Source: Damian’s Cajun Soul Café Facebook]

 

Although the restaurant and menu are small, Damian’s Cajun Soul Café delivers big on the food and service. Damian and his crew literally put their heart and souls into each dish, and you can taste it with every bite. Get classic soul food meals, like friend chicken and mashed potatoes, and fulfill your Cajun cravings with their scrumptious gumbo. People also can’t say enough about their smothered pork chops and melt-in-your-mouth cornbread. For the best authentic Louisiana-style cooking west of Louisiana, you have to head to Damian’s.

 

Fork In The Road

[Source: Fork In The Road Facebook]

 

Fork In The Road serves up casual and comfort foods in plentiful portions. They have great burgers, home cut fries that are perfectly fried and seasoned and pure cane sugar sodas. But if there’s one absolute must-try menu item, it’s the crackaroni—a three-cheese macaroni and cheese with truffle oil. And be sure to get it with bacon and jalapenos. From the outside, Fork In The Road doesn’t look like much; but you quickly learn it’s a true Arlington treasure once you step inside.

 

Arlington Hotels

 

Holiday Inn Express & Suites Arlington

1721 Pleasant Place

817-784-8750

 

Near the Rangers’ ballpark, Six Flags and other hot Arlington attractions, this hotel has a convenient location and even better amenities. From the complimentary breakfast to quality rooms and attentive staff, a stay here provides the relaxing, comfortable night’s sleep you want on vacation.

 

Blue Cypress Hotel

117 S. Watson Road

817-633-4000

 

Designed for leisure and business travelers, this modern boutique hotel in Arlington has it all. Enjoy coffee in the lobby 24/7, dine at the onsite restaurant, go for a swim in the pool and take their short shuttle ride to AT&T Stadium.

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Big Ben? Just a big old clock. The Tower of London? Just an old prison really. If you’re going to be in London and the idea of hopping on the tube just to go from tourist trap to tourist trap doesn’t sound like the best way to spend your day, then it’s about time you found out how to treat yourself in the capital. Whether you’re an adrenaline junkie who loves doing the extraordinary of just someone who wants some much needed me time, here are 4 ways to spend an untraditional day in London.

Do Some Rap Jumping

How does taking a dive face first off a 150ft building sound? If you have never heard of rap jumping, it is a form of abseiling that was created all the way back in the 1960s by the Australian army who probably wanted to look as badass as possible when rappelling down a building. Traditionally when you abseil down a building, you’re doing it with your head facing the wall and going down bum first. In this though, you are tied to the building and go down face first as if you’re going to run down the building.

The one place in the city doing this is Rap Jumping London who are based at Woodberry Down in the north of town. Why are they a bit out of the way? Well they have access to an actual castle that is almost 200feet high. That’s right; you get the chance to repel down a castle.

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Float on the Thames

When heights aren’t your thing (and you don’t mind the idea of taking a dip in the Thames) you could try out fly-boarding which is another activity you’ve probably never heard of before. Fly boarding is a bit like using a jet pack on water. You’re strapped on to a small balancing board with something that looks a little like a jet pack. It has a massive tube that pulls in water and launches you in the air where you will either balance and look quite slick or (which is most likely) try your best not to go 10 feet in the air and then fall right back in water.

Get a Hawaiian Massage

There’s an abundance of spas and salons dotted around town that offer a whole host of amazing treatments and getting a massage in London is a must, especially if you’re visiting on a long haul trip and want to get your body out of a jet lag funk. One way to do that would be to get a normal massage, but this isn’t a normal guide for what to do in London.

Instead you’ll want to visit a place like The Hale Clinic just beside Regent Park’s Station and try out a Lomi Lomi massage. What makes a massage like this different? Well for one thing the therapist might just jump up on the table and use their whole-body weight to squeeze and push. The treatment is very intense but is supposed to be great at improving circulation.

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Eat on the Tube

Ever sat down on the tube and been met with someone eating a very heavily seasoned bag of chips or a smelly tuna sandwich? Eating in such a confined space isn’t something you’d usually think of doing, but the unique Underground Supper Club is an exclusive monthly dinner event where you have a full slap up meal made by a chef; all done inside an old (refurbished) tube.

It’s a 7 course culinary experience that turns a cabin stuck in a car park in Walthamstow in to one of the most exclusive restaurants in London.

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If you are on the brink of retirement and contemplating buying that nice little cottage in the Cotswolds, consider the alternatives before making any decisions. A holiday home doesn’t necessarily have to be in bricks and mortar, and with modern motorhomes, the family has all the mod cons to enjoy the camping experience. There are advantages to buying a bricks and mortar second home, yet a mobile solution offers you a different holiday every time, and with the added excitement of fending for yourself, it is an attractive proposition.

The Benefits of a Motorhome

They are indeed many, with the main one being that your transport is also your accommodation, which is not only a lot cheaper, it is far more convenient. Buying a second home involves a very substantial amount of money, yet if you buy a used motorhome, you not only have that second home, but it has cost much less than a house and land.

Holiday Freedom

Owning your own motorhome is akin to owning every holiday you will take from that moment on, and with so many interesting places to experience, each trip will be unique in some way. Camping has always been popular in Britain, so expect to find many modern campsites, which are evenly spread across the country, so finding a suitable place to park for the night is never an issue. Those who are already hooked on self-driving holidays would be quick to explain how many friends they have made since they began to holiday in this fashion, and with so many other families having similar experiences, you are bound to connect.

Luxury Lifestyle

Camping has long been associated with discomfort and improvising, however, modern motorhomes are equipped with everything you could possibly need, and a little more, to make that touring experience a special one.

Buy Used

If you buy a new motorhome, the depreciation will be mainly over the first year or two, so invest in a quality used unit, and it will hold its price until you are ready for an upgrade. A second hand dealer would give a good warranty, and would only sell quality vehicles, and an established supplier would have a wide range of sizes that accommodate from 2-6 people.

Equity Release

Many semi-retired people are taking advantage of equity release programs and investing in a motorhome, in which they can travel anywhere they choose, and without having to book flights and accommodation, it is ideal for those who have the time and the inclination to just get up and go. This is a tax-free sum that is paid out when the lifetime mortgage begins, and it allows a person who is 55 or over, to release a portion of their equity. This money can be used to buy a second hand campervan, and then your holidays are secured for life, and with the freedom to go when and where you like, it makes for an ideal retirement.

So, if you are looking for a holiday home, make sure it is mobile, then you have the ultimate holiday experience.

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It’s every holiday-maker’s worst nightmare: falling ill while abroad, and having your time away totally ruined. Here’s what to look out for so you don’t end up under the weather – and what steps to take if you do

By Carl Waring

Brexit or no Brexit, we’re still all jetting away in our millions, desperate for some much-needed rays on our Vitamin D-starved skin — even with the shocking decline in the pound. With terrorism atrocities and fears striking some tourism hotspots, more of us than ever are holidaying closer to home, especially in reliable old Spain — a glorious land of year-round sunshine, and everything to light up all the senses.

In fact, almost eight million Brits travelled to Spain in the first half of this year — an astonishing rise of 16.5% on the same period in 2015, according to new Spanish figures. Many are opting for the beauty of Barcelona, or the deeper heat of the Costas, as well as the perennial good-time attractions of the Balearic islands of Majorca, Minorca, and Ibiza.

We’re All-In

With more of us now counting our pennies than ever before, the lure of the all-inclusive Spanish holiday has never been greater. They’re not just for families on a budget, either —  increasingly, friends and couples are taking up this option, too. Who could imagine you’d get so much for so little?

With flights, accommodation, food, drink, and entertainment all mixed into one shimmering Spanish package, everything’s taken care of before you even set foot on the plane. It’s not only about money, either; it’s about convenience, too, as everything you need to enjoy a fabulous holiday is right there for you. There’s no need to go out hunting for a different restaurant every night, hoping there’ll be something on the menu you’ll like.

But as with everything, there comes a risk, and in any place where lots of chefs are making meals for lots of people, there’s always the chance of a slip-up or two. Hygiene standards in even the most professional of resort kitchens can be sub-standard, and it’s often the guests who pay the price. Plus, as many meal sittings are buffet-style affairs, the food can often be left out for long periods, and what’s not used may be recycled for the next sitting.

All at Sea (Sick)

It’s not just those who choose the all-in package holiday who are at risk, either. Passengers on board a dozen or so cruise liners operating around the world are struck down each year with bugs that cause vomiting and diarrhoea, according to annual figures compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the US.

Whether on land or at sea, the common norovirus is quite often the culprit — a highly infectious agent that can also cause headaches, fever, aches in the limbs, and even stomach cramps. It’s an arresting combination of symptoms that suck the joy right out of any getaway. Unfortunately, there’s no specific medication to combat norovirus, and all those suffering with it can do is stay on the paracetamol, and wait it out for a few days.

Norovirus is especially easy to pick up while on all-in package holidays, because along with being transferred from person to person through exhaled breath, it can survive outside the host body for a number of days, waiting until someone touches an infected surface and picks it up.

If you get sick while holidaying in Spain on an all-inclusive package, and you suspect it’s because of something you ate or drank at your hotel, it’s important to realise that it most likely was not your fault, and you may be entitled to claim compensation. After all, the hotel has a responsibility to provide a safe, clean environment for its guests; if people become ill because of what they provided, the establishment must take responsibility.

Taking Action

Britons are far from shy in making personal Injury claims when they fall ill while abroad on holiday. In 2012 alone, 337,000 British holidaymakers filed claims for medical treatment they received while overseas, with an average payout of £815.

Up to now, many UK travellers have relied on the European Health Insurance Card scheme to get free treatment while in a European country, but some hospitals still charge — and besides, the card may soon become a thing of the past for Britons, as we prepare to leave the European Union.

If you fall ill from suspected food poisoning at your hotel or resort while in Spain, here’s what you need to do:

  • Get immediate medical attention
  • Report what happened to the hotel management, your travel rep, and your travel agent in the UK
  • Record as many names and contact details of hotel staff and management, as well as any witnesses. This will be highly useful in proving any claims
  • Also try to take photographs — buffets, dirty parts of the hotel, and other potential factors
  • Make sure you keep all medical notes, prescriptions, and receipts

Once you follow these guidelines, you can go ahead with a No Win, No Fee personal injury claim that won’t leave you out of pocket if it doesn’t succeed, and hopefully get what you’re entitled to.

After all that, you’ll probably need another holiday — a far more relaxing, enjoyable one, this time.

Author bio

Carl Waring is a senior solicitor with Mayiclaim, and has over 25 years of experience in compensation claims and legal disputes.

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Spring is a popular time to visit Washington, D.C. As the temperatures rise following the cold winter months, the city comes alive with activities...