Category: General Info

Did you know…

Thinking about exploring the USA?  Well did you know that there are 10 US States that are bigger than the UK (excluding water)!

Here they are in reverse order:

Oregon                                                         2% bigger

Wyoming                                                      3% bigger

Colorado                                                      10% bigger

Nevada                                                         17% bigger

Arizona                                                         21% bigger

New Mexico                                                 29% bigger

Montana                                                      55% bigger

California                                                      66% bigger

Texas is a whopping …                               178% bigger

But Alaska tops the lot coming in at a staggering 507% bigger!

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UK Budget Airlines Cabin Baggage Policy

Budget airlines are a great way to travel “light”. However the restrictions are very tight with regards to the luggage they allow you to take into the aircraft cabin.  Be warned – if you go over the limits stipulated at the time of booking the airlines will make charges or place your bags in the hold.

So before booking your budget flight have in mind how much luggage you are going to take. This will determine the best fare option for you (which may not necessarily be the cheapest option!)

Here is a quick overview of current baggage restrictions for those passengers travelling on the lowest (basic) fare levels. Please note these do change so always double check at time of booking.


One bag measuring a maximum of 56cm x 45cm x 25cm with no weight limit.


One bag measuring a maximum of 55cm x 35cm x 20cm with a weight limit of 10kg. You are also permitted to take one additional small handbag/laptop with you but the total weight of both your bags must not exceed 10kg.


One bag measuring a maximum of 55cm x 40cm x 23cm and weighing no more than 10kg (8kg to/from Dubai) plus a smaller bag measuring a maximum of 25cm x 22cm x 20cm. Total weight of all bags must not exceed 10kg (8kg to/from Dubai).

Ryan Air

No suitcase allowed in the cabin on the basic fare level. You are allowed to take a small hand bag in the cabin providing the overall size is no bigger than 35cm x 20cm x 20cm.  There is currently no weight limit for this bag.


One bag measuring a maximum of 55cm x 40cm x 20cm with a maximum weight of 5kg. TUI package customer’s maximum weight is 7kg.


One bag measuring a maximum of 56cm x 45cm x 25cm plus a small bag or laptop or duty free item.

Wizz Air

One bag measuring a maximum of 40cm x 30cm x 18cm.


One bag measuring a maximum of 42cm x 32cm x 25cm and weighing a maximum 10kg. You can purchase an additional bag that can be taken into the cabin with maximum dimensions of 56cm x 45cm x 25cm and weighing no more than 12kg. (Cost depends on the route).

We hope you find this guide handy and don’t forget we at Avocet Travel Management are able to book budget Airlines as well as first class round the world trips.

Groups, meetings and events

Scapa Flow on the Orkney Islands

Its been a hectic summer at Avocet Travel Management.  Three substantial groups have gone out all within days of each other keeping us all busy.

The first was a small bespoke group wishing to see George Stephenson’s locomotive the “Rocket” plus other bits and pieces of railway interest.  So beginning of August it was off to  York and the National Railway Museum, followed by a trip on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway to Whitby.

Then travelling to London and on to the Science Museum with a tour of London and a day trip to the Sussex countryside and a visit to the Bluebell Railway.

Then we had a group of 30 Singaporeans visiting the UK.  All they wanted to do was to go around Britain and see as much as they can so we embarked on a tour taking in Guernsey, Cork, Dublin, Belfast, Glasgow, Orkney Islands, Inverness, Edinburgh, Le Havre (I know its not the UK!) and London  before returning to the office for a day.  It was then off to Swindon for a meeting we had set up for 12 business people including an afternoon of sailing and pottery!

All in all a great August so thank you everyone for booking your groups through Avocet Travel Management.


Embarrassing things we’ve all done while travelling


Speaking slowly to a local only to find English is their first language

Slowly and clearly, you say to the local “por favor, do you know where the bus station eez?” – your hands doing the “driving the bus” motion while you smile and nod. “Yeah, it’s just around the corner” they reply in flawless English, confused. You walk away to avoid any further embarrassment.

Not showering for [insert your number] of days

Maybe the water was cold, or perhaps there was no running water at all. We’ve all resorted to the wet-wipe wash at some point during our travels. And of course, it’s essential to document how many days unwashed you are, if only as a disclaimer for the smell.

Using an English word abroad that means something else entirely

Don’t get romantic about a low-lying “mist” in France – this means “manure” to the locals and could make for some awkward conversation. If you ask for the “bill” in the Netherlands you may be shown somebody’s buttocks. And whatever you do, don’t ask a Norwegian lady to show you where the “bus” is…



Part of an article by Greg Dickinson @Greg_Dickinson

Canada Travel Authorites

Canada – Travel Authorities

Electronic Travel Authorisation to become mandatory for entrance into Canada – The border control programme will come into full effect on 29th September 2016. International visitors, including those from the UK, will be refused access if they don’t possess the document.

Travelling before this date we would still recommend that you obtain an ETA. Your Avocet Travel Partner will be able to assist you with this if required.

Introduction of Tourist Taxes – Majorca, Ibiza, Minorca and Malta

Anyone going on holiday to Majorca, Ibiza, and Minorca this summer will be asked to pay a Tourist Tax (known as ECOTASA) directly to their hotel on departure. (Effective 1st May 2016)

The Balearic Government will be charging €2.00 per person per day in 5 Star Hotels during High Season, €1.00 per person per day in all the rest of Hotels/apartments during High Season. Children under 16 years are free. There is a 50% tax reduction during the Low Season. Stays over 9 overnights also receive a 50% reduction. This Ecotasa is supposed to be charged by the Hotels directly at reception but this is still pending. These costs are subject to change.

The Maltese Government have introduced an environmental tax (effective immediately) and will be applicable for all adult guests staying in hotels and other accommodation on the island. The tax will be €0.50 per adult per night, capped at a maximum of €5.00 per adult per stay.

The tax will be collected directly by the accommodation and remitted to Government. This tax also applies to any accommodation that was booked before the announcement of the Eco Tax.



Turkey – value for money


Did you know that Turkey is 30% down on their tourism trade due to the bad press and scare mongering regarding the worldwide problem of terrorism?

Did you know that Istanbul and Ankara are nearly 8 hours’ drive from the main tourist areas?
That’s the equivalent of driving from Lands End to the very north of Scotland.

Did you know that this amazingly friendly welcoming country is probably offering some of the best value for money package holidays this summer?

The Turkish Lira is offering far better value than the Euro. All-inclusive packages are great family value.

Turkey has history, culture, wonderful beaches, hotels with built in water parks, great water sports AND YOU CAN SEE THE TURTLES nesting in certain beach areas something often associated with the Greek Islands only.

Kalkan for example is a gorgeous village with over 200 rooftop restaurants with fantastic views out to sea and unbelievably cheap prices.

Give us a call or email your Travel Partner if you would like more information on this lovely country.

Rail Strike – 26th and 27th April 2016 – Southern Trains

There is a possible strike on Tuesday 26th and Wednesday 27th April 2016  affecting trains operated by Southern.

If the strike goes ahead services to Gatwick Airport will be affected.  (Only Southern Trains – Thameslink should be operating normally but will be a lot more busier than usual)

Click below to be redirected to the Southern website or alternately call your Travel Partner