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Bagged a cheap holiday? Read this..


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It’s the summer holidays and around 3 months since the last student loan installment. You can hardly stretch to an iced bun from Greggs. The English summer is proving to be a damp disappointment and tales of Ibiza sunshine make you want to cry into your pillow.

But suddenly there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Cheap holidays! Really really cheap hCheap holidayolidays. Abroad- somewhere you actually have to challenge gravity to get to.

So you get a few friends involved, you only live once and your overdraft is there to be used to its full potential. You can’t quite stretch to Benidorm so Amsterdam will do. This is going to be brilliant! Sun, shops and drinking!

The travel agent welcomes you with open arms and before you know it you are stuffing too many clothes into what seems like the smallest suitcase ever invented. The details of the holiday are irrelevant; all you care about is the weather and the company you’re in.

You read the itinerary the night before leaving and discover the coach that the agent mentioned is not driving you to the airport. No. It is driving you all the way there, and it takes twelve hours. It will be fine, there is no use complaining about it now. It was cheap after all. It shortens the stay slightly but you’ll make the most of it. You remember the travel agent saying something about executive travel, reclining seats and inbuilt TV screens. Amazing! It will be like being in first class on the plane.

The day arrives and you and your friends join the queue of other broke students to board the coach. You climb in and don’t see any TV screens. Or entertainment. The seats definitely don’t recline.

It is a bit disheartening but you can’t do anything about it, let’s get drunk a friend suggests. Hip flasks come out and the rest of the coach seem to have had the same idea. They have probably done this before.

11 hours later the tiny space they call the toilet is covered in red sick. You haven’t been able to sleep a wink and the Lucozade that got thrown from the back of the coach ten hours ago has stained your ‘brits on tour’ novelty t-shirt.

You arrive and can’t wait to sleep for a few hours before starting to enjoy the holiday.

The hotel receptionist seems to have great pleasure in informing you that you can’t check in until 6pm that evening. It’s 8am in the morning.  

The long weekend stay transforms into a quick two day trip, you have spent around the cost of the holiday on bar crawls and drinks. The weather is only slightly warmer than England and you feel like you haven’t slept for six months. Then there is another twelve hour coach ride home.

You arrive back in England never happier to see your bed, and spend the rest of the holidays thoroughly enjoying hibernating and watching DVD boxsets on repeat.

Moral of the story? If you pay cheap you will get cheap.

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