Overseas holidays can be a tiring experience - more stress than relaxation. That’s hardly surprising as, while changes to your environment can be invigorating, coping with the myriad of tiny adjustments we have to make to make to our lifestyles to travel further afield is endless.
Here are twelve compelling reasons why self-catering holidays in the UK offer a more relaxing alternative to gite and villa holidays on the continent.
1. If things go badly wrong – you don’t have to rely upon the British Consulate to come to your assistance or struggle with translation when informing a property owner that he or she needs to call a plumber straight away and that whatever happened wasn’t your fault.
2. Suntan preservation: Have you noticed how quickly that hard-won suntan fades almost overnight? This is something to do with arriving home completely shattered after-hours tucked into an economy seat and standing in line in Arrivals. Certainly, arriving at work on your first day back looking tired, haggard and paler than planned will earn you scant sympathy from your colleagues. So why not go somewhere where the better part of the day you travel home can be spent on holiday activities. Thereafter, it's just an undemanding drive and you can still be home in time for The One Show.
3. Pre-Booking: It’s so much easier to pre-book tables at restaurants, tickets for shows before you leave home when holidaying in the UK holiday.
4. Lost property: If you’re like me, leaving something behind is relatively commonplace. Trying to secure the recovery of lost property from a UK holiday cottage owner is so much easier and less expensive than from abroad.
5. Technology: Appliance instructions (and operating panels) are all in English. Think on that the next time you try to manually re-set your Turkish or Hungarian air conditioning system or be sure you’ve selected the woollen wash.
6. Groceries: Ever tried pre-ordering supermarket groceries for your villa holiday in Sharm El Sheikh? Knowing that Sainsbury’s or one of the other supermarkets will be following you up the drive of your holiday cottage with your groceries is very comforting.
7. 4-Seasons Reasons: In the UK – people tend to holiday all year round. It’s therefore common for shops, restaurants, bars, tearooms and even attractions to remain open out of season.
8. Short breaks are more viable. You spend far more time on holiday rather than travelling to and from it. I recall a particular ‘weekend’ in Paris. What with departure times and delays, we arrived at our accommodation long after bedtime. We had one day in the city and then an early night so that we could be ready to leave at six on the Sunday morning for the flight home. Three days ‘away’ led to about twelve hours holidaying. Never again! And Reason 2 also applied.
9. Card Payments: You don’t run up a substantial interest-charging debt on your credit card account. Well, you could but paying by Debit card is much the cheaper option when in the UK.
10. Travel insurance fees won’t knock such a large hole in your holiday budget.
11. It's Pet-Friendlier: Taking the dog is easy
12. Highway Codes: In the UK it is straightforward and perfectly acceptable to drive on the left when you are on holiday!
And here’s a bonus money and climate-saving reason to stay in the UK rather than fly abroad: If you are concerned about the impact your journey has on global warming and plan to offset your travel carbon contribution, consider these savings.
· Bristol to Barcelona by short-haul flight: £18.64 (per person).
· Bristol to Bude in Cornwall: £2.68 (one car)
That’ll cover the cost of a lot of additional ice creams you can lick in Cornwall!
Data from the Travel cost calculator at https://ecolibrium.earth/travel-carbon-calculator/)