Based in Huddersfield

Gemma Favager

It's Nice To Meet You

I have a genuine passion for travel and have been fortunate enough to travel extensively from the Arctic Circle to Zanzibar! Previous holiday highlights include a safari in Kenya to spending Christmas skiing in Canada and also visiting Father Christmas in Lapland, Finland. I was also fortunate to visit Brazil, an amazing country that did not disappoint.

Now having two young boys my holidays have changed slightly but we love experiencing new cultures and discovering new destinations. We are all hooked on cruising after doing our first as a family 5 years ago, even the eleven and eight-year-old members of my family! I have been on many different ships and love to talk and advice those who are new to cruise, and who have cruised before on the differences each cruise line/ship will give you. Not to mention the amazing adventures and itineraries available.

My focus is to get you the right holiday totally tailored to your requirements. I can provide flexibility to speak outside of normal working hours giving you the opportunity to discuss and look at your travel plans at a time that suits you and fits into your life. I am here as your personal contact from your initial enquiry to when you return home from your holiday and beyond.

I can assist with all areas of travel from corporate trips to UK breaks and weekends away to flight only, city breaks, villas, long haul, weddings, cruise, ski, groups as well as tailor-made itineraries, once in a lifetime trips and package holidays.

“Travelling – it leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller.” – Ibn Battuta

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Contact Me

Whatever your holiday needs I'm here to help you, so simply give me a call or send me an email with your contact details on and I can get things started for you:

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My Videos

‘Postcards’ – A special film from Travel Counsellors - Tony Walsh Video

4/9/2021

We’ve missed exploring the world with the people that mean the most to us and as we look forward, I’ll keep your wellbeing at the heart of everything I do.

The Favager Boys take on lock down home schooling

2/3/2021

The Favager boys being interviewed on how they have found home schooling the 2nd time around. To add my youngest has never been called a pony!

Our trip to Lapland

12/29/2020

The Favagers enjoying a magical trip to Lapland where we combined a weeks skiing with a husky & reindeer experience as well as a visit to Father Christmas!

A World of Good in 2021

12/29/2020

A collection of holiday ideas and inspiration that will do you the world of good in 2021!

My Blog

I absolutely live and breathe travel and I love to write about my experiences! Please take a look through my posts - you might find your own holiday inspiration.

My week onboard P&O Cruises newest ship, Iona

08 May 2022

I have been fortunate to have cruised to the Norwegian Fjords twice before and it is one of my favourite places on earth. When the opportunity arose for me to experience it again on P&Os latest cruise ship, Iona I jumped at the opportunity!. It also had the added benefit of calling at Alesund and Haugesund, two towns I had never visited before. Iona is perfect for the Fjords. The atrium is stunning with three stories of glass maximising the views as you sail along this beautiful part of the world. The firm favourite with P&O cruises, Glass House is in the atrium as well as Keel & Cow (a steak restaurant that carries a cover charge) as well as the coffee shop which is open most of the day. Seating areas are located throughout the atrium allowing lots of space to relax and watch the world pass by. It was very popular with a good buzz throughout the whole cruise. We had a corner balcony cabin located on deck 14 with a huge balcony. These cabins always go very quickly, and it is "fastest finger first" when the cruises go on sale. This is due to additional space you have without paying a supplement! It is worth noting that cabins located on Promenade deck (deck 8) are overlooked balconies. This is where numerous infinity whirlpools are based and a full ship walking area. It is not one for those wanting privacy as everyone taking a stroll can see into your cabin. Some of the new Conservatory Cabins are located on this deck so if you want to avoid this, please speak to me and we can go through the deck plan together. The Sky Dome is a first for Iona. It has an indoor pool, hot tubs, bar, Taste (pizzas, hot dogs etc) as well as the Gelato. It is perfect for cooler days when the other infinity pools are a little too cold! On an evening it transforms to an entertainment venue. Sometimes with the pool being covered to provide an additional stage area. We watched a few shows here and it was a welcome change to a traditional auditorium setting. The entertainment on board was very varied from acoustic bands, the resident band Pulse (who are very good) and performed with a different "theme" every night to the theatre shows. We struggled to see all the different acts as there was so much choice each evening. We pre-paid a drinks package which included all drinks to the price of £6.75 which included most wines, beers, and cocktails. It also included ice cream from the main Gelato and speciality coffees. I have to be honest and say the food and service in the main dining room was disappointing. As a result, we made the most of the spcialiy dining venues on offer. Epicurean was sublime (I enjoyed the best lobster I have ever had) as was Sindhu the Indian restaurant. I recommend booking these in advance of your cruise as they get booked up quickly onboard and it also works out slightly cheaper. We also dined at the Olive Grove which is a Mediterranean restaurant that carries a £7.50 per person cover charge. There are additional costs payable dependant on the meals you choose but most are included. We ate here twice as the food was excellent and would have booked again if we could have got in! Beach House is a Mexican restaurant that also carries the same charges. The food was also really good and we dined here three times. As well as Horizon, the buffet restaurant, there is also the Quays. This is self service from street style food areas. There was traditional fish and chips, Oriental as well as burgers. It is a good place for lunch and on a morning offers waffles, pancakes, made to order omelettes as well as a smaller buffet area. The food here was delicious and it was excellent to have somewhere to grab a quick bite as opposed to going to the buffet every time. As a summary, I loved Iona as a ship but there are some top tips if you are sailing on her; 1. Ensure you know where your cabin is located to avoid more public ones unless you love people watching! 2. Pre book your speciality restaurants such as Epicurean and Sindhu and once onboard get others such as Olive Grove and Beach House confirmed before they get booked up 3. Order your drinks with your meals in the main dining areas. We waited for the wine waiter (as per previous cruises) to be told we should have ordered with our meals 4. Be aware that once onboard, to pre book extras the best way is via myholiday.pocruises.com There is no app and we saw a lot of people struggling with this. The app does not let you know if you have a dinner clash (important if you are paying). 5. Some entertainment venues also require you to pre book them in advance, especially in the 710 Club and the main theatre. 6. Remember your masks! These are still mandatory in Southampton cruise terminal. I loved my week onboard Iona and would go back on her. I would just be more organised with dinner reservations as we managed to eat very well each evening but we spoke to a few people who were regular P&O cruise customers and they were disappointed.

Overview of my time at the CLIA river cruise conference in Budapest

31 March 2022

I have recently returned from a fantastic 4 days in Budapest where I attended the CLIA River Cruise conference. The theme of the conference was "Rediscover River" and we really did! With 10 different ships moored up waiting for us to explore, I also slept on 3 very different ships giving me a real taste of all they have to offer. A River cruise enables you to get into the heart of your port of call. Whether it is stepping off and being in the centre of Budapest in minutes or exploring a local vineyard you can experience your location via an organised tour, jump on one of the many bikes most cruise lines have onboard or going off alone, the choice is yours but the convenience is fantastic. This is a brief overview of each ship I had the pleasure of exploring and the inclusions you will enjoy. A-Rosa; A-Rosa have been cruising the Rivers for 20 years! Their new ship A-Rosa Sena coming in May is an absolute game changer for families. I am already looking into our holiday for next year. She looks incredible. Families are very much welcomed on her and they are one of the only ships I know that have family cabins for up to five people. The A-ROSA Kids Club has its own dedicated rooms on board which is also a first. Parents can take a dip in the 23 sq m pool and kids will love their separate children’s pool on deck. There is a variety of leisure activities onboard as well as a spa and wellness area. Do not be put off if you are not travelling with children, there is so much on offer on all of A-Rosa ships and given how long they have been doing this for, and the level of repeat custom they enjoy they are definitely doing something right! A-Rosa are a Premium All Inclusive product and have bags of outside space including dining areas. They also include transfers to and from the ship and children under the age of 15 travel for free! Scenic Amber; Scenic call their river cruise ships Space-Ships due to the level of technology and innovation onboard. My expectations were very high and she did not disappoint. Wonderful food, comfy beds, a shower with so many different settings. Fully inclusive including champagne, the list goes on! She really is amazing and you can tell she is a 5*+ ship the minute you arrive. I had the pleasure of staying onboard Scenic Amber and stayed in one of the Balcony Suites. They are stylishly decorated and feature a full-length outdoor balcony with the exclusive Scenic Sun Lounge. With the sun shining in, the suite felt huge as a result of the sun lounge feature and really airy. Scenic provide an ultra all inclusive offering from home to airport transfers to the signature and exclusive experiences you can enjoy in port. Emerald Sun; She is contemporary and sleek. I loved the pool, bright and airy staterooms and the food looked fabulous. The pool roof opens giving an outside in experience and on an evening turns into a cinema room! Emerald are the sister brand to Scenic offering a 4* experience (although to be honest, to me she was 5*) and you can see a lot of similarities in the décor and style of the ships. Emerald offer an extensive range of inclusive packages including dining, gratuities, selected drinks, most shore excursions and a host of additional extras. Most ships have some type of activity on the upper deck and I love that Emerald Sun has giant noughts and crosses! AMA Waterways AMAVerde; AMAVerde is a twin balcony river ship and she is full of bold artwork and light. The packages include: All meals on board (I ate onboard and the food was delicious) Comfortable accommodations Ocean transportation Entertainment and daily activities Port charges Europe Cruises Coffee, tea & complimentary bottled water Avalon Envision; One of the things I loved about Avalon Envision is the fact that the beds face out of the windows so you can enjoy the magnificent views without having to move! The bicycles are free to use and you can go off and explore the areas around you independently. Most river cruise ships offer this and often you can cycle along next to the rivers and join the ship at the next docking areas. They offer some stunning suites with wall to wall, floor to ceiling panoramic windows that open out to a unique open air balcony. Avalon Waterways include a number of luxurious inclusions, as well as dining and drinks, VIP private home pick-up service – with a personal chauffeur service transferring you between your airport or station and the ship. She really is a stunning ship. APT Travel Marvel; APT Travel Marvel Vega. She was due to set sail in 2020 but due to the pandemic, her first sailing was the day after we were onboard. We are first onboard! Vega is a 4* ship that feels 5*! I will definitely be recommending her to you. Due to the fact she sits lower in the water, you will benefit from the sun deck being open as you sail under the small bridges on some of the rivers. Not all ships can do this She is a stunning, contemporary ship! They offer many inclusions such as House wine, local beer and soft drink served with lunch and dinner on board, Comprehensive range of guided tours and sightseeing excursions Insider Experiences offering local insights and memorable meals and overseas airport transfers on the first and last day of your tour to name but a few. Uniworld S.S Beatrice; S.S Beatrice is one of Uniworlds Super ships. Her décor is more yacht style and I have to say, she had some of my favourite lounges/ship areas. She felt, modern and airy and she also seemed to have a wider choice of areas to sit and watch the magnificent scenery go by or enjoy the onboard entertainment. I had the pleasure of staying onboard and had an amazing breakfast and a very restful nights sleep! Each Uniworld ship is decorated to reflect he river she is ailing on so everyone is different. Each boasts original pieces of artwork from Picasso, Alexander Calder and Pino Signoretto. Uniworld fares are all-inclusive. Once onboard you should have no other key expenditure, other than items you buy on shore. It covers food, drinks, excursions, gratuities, talks and Wi-Fi. I also went onboard CroisiEurope Vivaldi and TUI Skyla. Both have some really attractive elements I would love to share with you if you are interested in finding out more. I am definitely a River Cruise convert and will be experiencing one for myself in full soon. Please do get in touch if this is on your radar and I can guide you through he different options!

My End Of Year Newsletter

29 December 2021

Welcome to my end of year Newsletter. Firstly, I hope you and your loved ones have had a wonderful, healthy Christmas and are looking forward to a travel filled 2022! It has been another "interesting" year in the world of travel but thankfully, 2021 was much more positive than 2020. 2022, although I am sure will present it's own challenges looks like it will be better again as the world takes a more uniformed approach to travel including testing, entry requirements and working to the same list of "red countries". I would like to take the opportunity to thank you for your continued support over the last 12 months. The referrals and wonderful testimonials that I have received have kept me going, especially when the government decide to change UK entry requirements at 10pm on a Saturday evening! Where have you been travelling to? I have had the privilege of sending over 180 clients on holiday this year. Adventures have ranged from UK hotels, cottages as well as UK cruises, something that has never really been on the radar before. As well as those venturing further afield to destinations such as Barbados, Mexico and Mauritius. Plus, so many children finally got to meet the real Father Christmas in Lapland this year after having to postpone their trip last year. Where have I travelled to? 2021 has definitely been the year of cruises for me! I have been a big cruise fan for many years and this year I have been fortunate enough to go on 3 different cruises. 2 around the Uk onboard the fun filled Royal Caribbean, Anthem Of the Seas and the regal, Princess Cruises, Sky Princess. More recently I flew to Miami to board Virgin Voyages new cruise ship cruising to 2 x Islands in the Bahamas (bliss). I also got to Crete with my family! Lets get social! One thing that has not changed this year is that entry requirements for both the UK as well as overseas have and can change with little or no notice. If you are on social media, please follow my Facebook and or Instagram pages. I share regular travel updates on there as well as future holiday inspiration and offers. For Facebook use; https://www.facebook.com/GemmaFavager.TravelCounsellors and Instagram; https://www.facebook.com/GemmaFavager.TravelCounsellors Our performance since Covid hit..... It is no secret that travel was decimated when Covid hit in March 2020. However, one thing that I and all at Travel Counsellors are justifiably proud of is the feedback we have had from you on the way we managed the pandemic. We credited 11,003 customers for future bookings, rebooked 13,790 and processed 48,410 refunds! Travel Counsellors also came top 3 times in a row on Martin Lewis Money Saving Expert poll for how we managed your refunds. Thank you for reading my newsletter and I would like to wish you and your family a very happy and prosperous New Year! Xx

My time in Miami and onboard Virgin Voyages, Scarlet Lady!

13 December 2021

Having returned from the epic trip onboard the Adults Only Virgin Voyages, Scarlet Lady, I wanted to share a post dedicated purely to her. I must admit I was a little wary of Virgin Voyages as they have heavily advertised that they are focused on attracting those individuals who have not/do not want to cruise. I love cruising so was worried it would be a bit too “out there”. How wrong I was!! The vibe onboard is very laid back. During the day there are activities going on but they are not advertised in a daily patter, you stumble across them as you work your way around the ship, similar to day out in your local town/city. This can be anything from acoustic sessions, board games (they were so popular with the Americans) to make up classes and so many health and well being choices. Around the pool, the vibe was chilled with low level music being played until the pool party kicked off and the tempo was turned up. This was the same on an evening, most dining venues also have a bar and the entertainment in each was so different. You could do a pub crawl around the ship and have a wonderful night out just seeing who was playing where. Plus the pop up entertainment like the magicians who will just appear next to you was great. The shows I saw were brilliant. So different to anything I have seen before and the entertainment team seemed to genuinely enjoy “hanging out” with Joe Public after their shows. I loved the 80s show complete with hula hoops and lots of neon clothing! Another thing I loved was the deck layout. You can get your bearings on Scarlet Lady quickly with none of the “have to go up a floor to reach that venue” situations going on that you get on most ships. You could walk in a straight line and pretty much get from the front to the back of the ship on all floors. We stayed in a Sea Terrace (balcony) cabin which was turned into a twin. It was spacious with a good size balcony that comes with a hammock (made in Thailand from recycled materials) although the bathroom was small. However, I genuinely do not think I have been on any other ship where I spent so little time in my room. There was too much to enjoy to be hanging around in there. Virgin Voyages do not offer a traditional drinks package and instead you can purchase a bar tab. This allows you to buy any drink you want with nothing not included. It is surprising how far the bar tab went as all soft drinks, water and drip tea & coffee are included in the cost of your cruise. As is WIFI and all gratuities. The prices were reasonable with most drinks ranging from $9 to $14 for cocktails. This ship is 100% one for foodies. With all speciality dining included we enjoyed experimental food with paired wines in the Test Kitchen, Korean BBQ food and Soju drinking games in Gunbae, stylish Mexican flavours in Pink Agave, fine fish & steak dining in The Wake, and a bottomless Prosecco brunch in there too & brunch with a twist in Razzle Dazzle. This is on top of The Galley food market, low key pizza, hot dogs & tapas options and a truly fabulous ice cream parlour (to reiterate, this is all included, I do not think I have ever eaten as well on a cruise ship!). There was also lots more we didn’t get to experience as there was no way we could have got around all the eateries during our short stay, but we tried! As part of this amazing experience I got to swim with Pigs in the Bahamas, visit Virgin Voyages own beach club on the exclusive island of Bimini in the Bahamas and also see the alligators in the Everglades. Plus, we spent a wonderful evening on South beach Miami and visited the chilled Bayside area of Miami. I really did fall in love with Scarlet Lady (as well as Miami and the Bahamas!!) and would 100% go back on her tomorrow if I could! Scarlet Lady's sister ship, Valiant Lady is sailing around the Med in the Summer and has some amazing itineraries including overnight stays in Ibiza and Mykonos! Get in touch and let me tell you more about this great cruise line and the wonderful itineraries available! Xx

Top Picks For Some Serious City Shopping

16 June 2021

Check out my top picks for some serious city shopping and start planning your next adventure today! Which would you choose? I have been fortunate and have experienced New York twice, Dubai and Las Vegas so for me, Singapore is next! Bangkok - MBK Center and CentralWorld are a shopper's paradise, not to mention the night markets - be sure to leave room in your suitcase Las Vegas - on top of the mega casinos and out of this world entertainment, Las Vegas boasts great shopping including The Miracle Mile under Planet Hollywood, The Shops at Crystals and Las Vegas North & South Premium Outlets - the perfect spots to bag a bargain! Singapore – shop ‘til you drop in the super malls of Orchard Road, browse the street markets of China Town and for a little luxury head to the designer boutiques of The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands New York - From Bloomingdales to Barneys to Fifth Avenue, this has to be the most iconic shopping spot of them all! Dubai - Top spots include The Dubai Mall, Mall of the Emirates and of course, the local souks These are just a few of the tried and tested favourites, but also worth a mention are Hong Kong, Florida and Tokyo. Now is the perfect time to take advantage of the flight sales available next year so get in touch, and lets plan your next shopping adventure! 01484 490026

My 2020 End Of Year Update

16 December 2020

I hope you enjoy reading my newsletter that I shared with those registered in my Marketing List. If you would like to be added, please just let me know. I shall lots of inspiration travel content and also keep my customers informed with changes to travel regulations. I think that we have all been affected in some way or another during the past 9 months, whether it be losing a loved one, losing a business or just feeling rubbish because, life as we know it, has severely changed, I would just like you all to know that my thoughts are with you. Back in March I was on course for my best year ever so would like to take this time to thank everybody who had a holiday booked and has been so patient with me and trusting me to do what is right for you and all of you who have supported me over the last 3 years. A lot of my customers had amazing holidays booked for 2020 including a tour of China, a family trip to Vietnam, multi centre trips to Thailand, a road trip across America and many more. When the country went into lockdown on the 16th March, to see all those holidays cancelled was absolutely devastating. But I said then and still say it now, Covid will not sack me from a job I love! When is the best time to book for 2021 and beyond? This is a question I’m getting asked on a regular basis. The quick answer is now. Lots of people have rebooked their 2020 holidays to 2021 which means availability at peak times like school holidays are already limited. If you’re flexible with your dates then there are some great offers to be had and I’ve already booked people holidays at greatly reduced prices, compared to the prices that they were originally paying for their 2020 holiday. And finally, to give you something to look forward to! Brexit (I really am sorry); Brexit, I am sorry (although it does make a change to be talking about this again rather than just Covid)! As the UK Government is still in ongoing negotiations when it comes to travel policies, it is important to stay up to date as new legislation is announced. The main changes apply to Passport validity and exclusions, driving permits and Insurance. Read our blog here for further information; https://www.travelcounsellors.co.uk/gb/leisure/travel-advice/brexit-on-travel/ My Zoom Discovery Evenings; Whilst we were all in lockdown in June I launched my live “zoom discovery evenings” to keep us dreaming about destinations that may be on our travel wish list, or perhaps ones we have never thought about. I invite experts from around the world to tell us more about their country and get a deeper insight into what you can do and experience. I have hosted evenings on Iceland, Tanzania, The Rocky Mountaineer, Lapland, Adventure Travel as well as Vietnam. The next event is on the 19th January and it is on Cambodia & Laos. Please let me know if you would like to come along and I will send you the login details. Travel Going Forward; We recently launched our Ultimate Flexible Promise which will allow you to book a holiday and be able to amend, cancel & refund a range of selected holidays up until 15 days before departure due to airlines cancelling flights, restrictions in force or passenger testing positive for Covid-19 before travel. Destinations covered include Dubai & the Maldives and are for all new bookings to travel up until the 31st March 2021! I have access to the latest FCOD advice so am on hand to guide you through the ever-changing country requirements. And to end, another Thank You; I say it a lot on my social media posts, but my customers are the best! I have received some lovely gifts (never expected but very much appreciated) from bunches of flowers, to gin and gift vouchers. They have all had the same theme, thanking me for looking after them whilst their travel plans have been rearranged, refunds fought for as well as simply being at the end of the phone whenever they have a question. I pray 2021 is a smoother ride but the level of care I give to you will not change! Thank you again Xx

When is the best time to see the Northern Lights?

26 September 2020

The elusive Northern Lights! Without a doubt the most common question I get whenever a customer is thinking of visiting Iceland is "when is the best time to see the Northern Lights"? This question is a tricky one, and one where I can give my expertise whilst remembering that this is a natural phenomena so it's all just guessing…or is it? Here I share with you some Northern Lights wisdom! For some reason somebody, at one time said that February was the best month, which is something that baffles our Partner supplier that lives in Iceland. February isn't necessarily better than November, or March for that matter. So FORGET anything you've heard about a specific month being better than another. The Northern Lights season in Iceland is very simply from the 1st September until the 15th April. This is the season that we run the scheduled Northern Lights tours. Any day during this entire season you can simply be lucky or unlucky. It's that simple - BUT there are other things you may want to consider when thinking of visiting Iceland and seeing the breath taking Northern Lights: Overall enjoyment of your holiday. Remember that the Norther Lights are a BONUS to your holiday, try to focus on all the other amazing things your holiday to Iceland will give you, and if you see the lights it'll be an incredible bonus. I can give you my promise that when booking a trip with me and having our on the ground partners looking after you, they will to do their absolute best to enable you to experience the Northern Lights. Join a cruise or coach tour on the first evening and if you don't see them, come again for free. This means we multiply your chances of seeing them. We will also let you know if there is no chance of seeing them so you can spend your evening differently (the technology used in to track the lights is amazing and they will not take you out on an evening if they know in advance the cloud cover is too thick etc), and rebook you automatically for tomorrow. They monitor their great forecasts every hour of the day. September, October, March and April are very good "shoulder months". These months are milder than the harshest winter, meaning more daylight hours and typically milder weather. November - February is peak winter. This means less daylight hours and more likely to encounter snowstorms or harsh weather conditions. Don't worry we will always take care of you, and turn around your program if needs be, but be prepared for colder, darker days. The darker the better for Northern Lights, certainly, but don't forget your excursions during the day which may be more enjoyable in the milder months. If there are ANY guideline you'd want in regards to Northern Lights, the only real guide is to come within the season (obviously) and try to avoid full moon (top tip). A full moon really brightens up the sky and may jeopardize the magnitude of the Northern Lights sight. In early 2021 Northern Lights season full moons fall on the 28th January, 27th February and the 28th March I can tailor any adventure to Iceland complete with unbelievable experiences! Get in touch and have something amazing to look forward to it 2021!

Our Italian Summer Escape - Part One of my blog

18 September 2020

I booked out Italian adventure in January and in truth, once this awful pandemic struck I thought we had no chance of getting there this year. I am incredibly grateful that we did and had a truly phenomenal Italian Escape! Manchester Airport was like when I flew to Majorca when lock down was first lifted earlier this summer although there were more people which was great for me to see. However, security was just as quick, 5 minutes and we were through and pretty much everything was open, including the Executive Lounges which we made the most of. My Six-year-old was fine wearing his mask (he did not complain once) whilst we walked around the terminal building, but it is always nice to take it off once you are seated having something to eat and drink. We started this adventure with 4 nights in Rome. It is 13 years since I last visited Rome and I loved it just as much as I did the first time around. St Peters wowed me once again (exploring the tombs with the boys was much more interesting then when Neil and I did it on our own), being able to take a clear picture of the Trevi Fountains is just unheard of and we pretty much just walked into the Pantheon. Socially distanced queuing was in place at all public buildings and temperature checks were completed on everyone entering one of these amazing buildings. Masks are compulsory in all enclosed spaces but even when walking down the smaller streets, once it became more difficult to maintain a metre distance, the locals naturally put on their face masks so we followed suit. I honestly felt more comfortable in Italy than I do in the UK! My eldest loves all things Roman and he simply loved the Colosseum. We pre-booked tickets just for ease and even though things are much quieter than usual, I would still recommend that you do this. Another major highlight for my boys was Gladiator school! If you have anyone in your family that has a fascination with Roman history and gladiators then this is a must, even I enjoyed it. Get in touch with me for more information on this fun afternoon which provides something completely different to a typical Rome experience! Our hotel (which was excellent) had regular reminders such as 3 people maximum or just 1 family in the lifts, breakfast was pre-plated behind screens and the hot food was chef served. You could get your own fruit juice which was different to when I went to Majorca earlier in the summer when everything was chef/waiter served. A selection of breads was delivered to the table in pre-made up paper bags and there was lots of hand sanitising stations everywhere. I was very impressed with the pool set up. The lifeguard would not allow anyone to sit on a sun bed that had been previously used until he had sprayed it down and the spacing was excellent. One tip, if you are contemplating doing a similar holiday and you have children, book a hotel with a pool (they are not easy to find in Rome) and I am so glad we did as it made such a difference having a splash around at the end of a days sightseeing.

Our Summer Italian Escape - Part 2 of my blog

18 September 2020

We then collected our car and drove up to a little village South of Siena in the Tuscan hills where we spent 8 nights in a beautiful converted Farm House. Tuscany is just as I imaged after seeing pictures over the years. Fields full of olive trees and vine yards and beautiful buildings everywhere. The farmhouse was stunning. It had 5 apartments and an onsite restaurant which was a major hit with the locals, it does not depend on residents which is always a bonus (we could not get a table on our first night as it was booked up). As it was so quiet with other guests staying in the apartments, we had the pool completely to ourselves for most of our stay and my boys had a blast. Our apartment which was on the ground floor with our own little courtyard was spotless and had everything we needed to cook evening meals and give us space and tranquillity after 4 nights in the capital city. They even had a resident Donkey (I absolutely love donkeys, so this was a major bonus for me??) Siena was beautiful and worth a visit (I know this is a general well-known tip but make sure you step back from the main square for the restaurants, there are some great quirky places to eat away from the main drag) but for me Montepulciano tipped it. Maybe it was the delicious red wine that did it! We had had major storms overnight but even in the rain it is a beautiful town and one I would love to spend more time exploring. It is somewhere I will now recommend for a weekend break. You could happily spend all afternoon sampling the local wine offered in pretty much all shops/restaurants and enjoying the meat samples. The views are breath taking! We also have had a Favager first, a day spent in some natural thermal pools. There are many thermal pools in Tuscany and a lot have been purchased and taken over by private companies. You can book full “spa” days with full facilities and treatments available. However, we decided to do as the locals do and experience a fully “natural one”. We decided on Bagni Di San Fillip Terma Pools and they were fantastic! We walked down the river for circa 20 minutes and had 3 pools all to ourselves. Do not be put off by the colour of the water in my pictures, it is like that because we had been playing in the mud which is said to have healing powers. It was like stepping into a warm bath. The natural waterfalls coming down from the hills were bordering on being hot! It was such a wonderful experience and something I highly recommend and will do again. After 8 nights in our Farmhouse we reluctantly said goodbye. There were tears from my boys as they did not want to leave, it was that idyllic and I must admit, we were a very subdued car as we drove away and headed to Florence to spend out last night in a hotel there. If you spend any time in Florence and have a car, make sure you have a hotel that has parking. We were fortunate that ours did but the hotelier remarked that typically in the height of summer you really do struggle to get any as most are reserved for residents inside the towns walls. Florence is beautiful, and I am so glad we decided to spend a night there rather than just a day. Seeing the Cathedral of Florence, Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore during the day and then lit up in the evening was fabulous and there was a great family vibe as we walked around after our evening meal. Our flight was not due to leave Pisa until 10.30pm on our last day and I was worried that it would end up being a day of clock watching and wishing the hours away. How wrong I was. We spent most of our last day in Lucca. Another stunning city that really impressed me. Hire a bike and cycle the castle walls. It was brilliant to see the locals out enjoying their Saturday and we got a quad bike which was great fun. The streets are like a labyrinth so make sure you take note of where you are parked as you can easily become disorientated. Another gorgeous Galetto was consumed before we headed to Pisa to take “that photo” before heading to the airport. There is not much to do in Pisa apart from visit the Leaning Tower, so I would never recommend spending a significant amount of time there, especially when there are so many other stunning towns and cities to visit nearby. However, you must go and see the Tower if you have not done before as the area where it is lovely. We once again benefited from minimal crowds and had no problem getting the shot of us holding the tower up. The car was dropped off with no issue, check in and we were on our way home. A perfect end to a perfect holiday and I am once again faced with the task of trying to find something next year that is equally as good. So far, I am drawing a blank! Please get in touch if you would like any further information on our Italian Escape or would like to plan your own adventure x

My experiences of flying now....

15 July 2020

I made the decision to travel to Majorca with two fellow Travel Counsellors and my son to go and test for myself what the “new normal” feels like in the world of travel. I will be honest and say I was nervous beforehand, especially taking my 9-year-old as I had no idea how he would cope having to wear a mask for such a long time and whether I was making the right decision to travel at all. However, me being me needed to experience this myself to confidently be able to talk you my customers through the process and truthfully answer questions on how it is. Masks are compulsory throughout the airport and on planes now, but each airline have different policies in place for children. For example, children under 12 years old flying with Ryan Air are exempt from wearing them whereas EasyJet and Jet2 require all children over the age of 6 to wear them. Those with breathing difficulties are also exempt but please be aware, you may be required to show medical documentation to cabin crew and airline staff. The airport was quiet, naturally but security was amazing, 5 minutes and we were through! I did take advantage of booking a free 15-minute security slot but to be honest as the airport was so quiet I did not need to use it. However, I would still recommend taking advantage of this as more flights commence over the summer period. There were no specific distancing markers in place, but regular announcements reminded everyone and to be honest, a general common sense approach was being applied by my fellow travellers. Once through security, spacing signs are seen at regular intervals and there is an abundance of hand sanitisers to use. These are situated close to the lifts, food areas etc, generally where there are high touch points. We flew from terminal 3 which had only opened this week (all flights prior to this point had departed from Terminal 1) and Duty Free, WHSmiths, Boots and the bar were all in operation and there was a lovely buzz in the air. Terminal 2 is due to open this week although please check which terminal you are flying from as some airlines have moved to T1 so it is still unclear whether it will be operational. Many countries are now asking for additional information prior to you arriving in their country. Spain for example now require you to register your details 48 hours in advance of your arrival as part of their Track & Trace system and each member of your party are given a unique QR code. This must be presented upon arrival alongside your passport. I am staying in regular contact with my customers due to fly out in the next month and I highly recommend anyone who is due to travel to make regular checks on the FCO website as requirements can change without warning. The taxi from Palma to our hotel was quick and simple and every taxi has a clear glass window between you and the driver giving passengers additional peace of mind. In our hotel, and I know it is similar for all the major hotel chains, there is socially distanced queuing at check-in & hand sanitiser dispensers are everywhere, especially by the lifts, and only people staying together are allowed in the lift at one time. The main area where everyone gathers, the restaurant, is well managed and does take a bit longer to enter as you must wait in a socially distanced queue to be seated. Then there is a spaced-out queue for the buffet, which is chef served to minimise contact with the serving utensils. All the usual food is available, salads & desserts pre-prepared in little individual pots, cooking stations, tapas and fresh locally caught Mallorcan fish. Masks to be worn at all times around the restaurant apart from when seated at your table and everyone complies, and it is easy to get used to. After the first time in the restaurant getting used to the procedure it just feels normal and, dare I say it, even a more pleasant experience to enjoy your meal (once seated with mask off!) In the outdoor areas around the pools and the beach, the experience is no different from normal, no special rules above general distancing guidelines. Everyone was happy, chilled and respecting personal space, even in the swimming pools and that included the children. Our hotel was operating at their now “full capacity” which was circa 70% to what they can normally accommodate and there was plenty of space for all to enjoy the facilities as normal. The rules have changed slightly now in Spain from this Monday and masks are mandatory whenever you are in any public area including when you are walking to the beach etc. Once there you can remove it and enjoy your time as usual, you can also remove it once seated at your table to enjoy your food and drink. The resort of Playa De Palma where we were was busy enough to have that “holiday resort feel” but much quieter than normal when the beaches are packed. I loved this, and it is definitely how I prefer my holiday experience. Another great addition now is that rather than having menus, most bars and restaurants have QR codes so you are not having to pick something up that has been used previously and it downloads the menus straight to your phone. Waiter service is offered pretty much everywhere, and we witnessed regular cleaning in the resort establishments. I must be honest and say it really felt no different (apart from it being quieter than normal) if I had been there 6 months ago. None of the new measures including wearing a mask on the flight or whilst we were out and about phased my 9-year-old. In fact, he had to remind me sometimes to put it on. I had the most wonderful two nights (I wish it had been longer) and it has made me look forward to our holiday to Italy at the end of August even more! If anyone has any specific questions about the hotel or airport experience, please just let me know

If you've tried Greece and Italy, you might want to consider Malta!

18 June 2020

If you've tried Greece and Italy, you might want to consider Malta! It is bursting with history and sights to see, as well as attracting a much younger crowd these days who are drawn to the island's many highlights. The small, sparkling island of Malta packs a big punch! 7,000 years of human activity can be traced by history lovers. Explore the 16th-century, St John's Cathedral and Casa Rocca Piccola, a grand palazzo and explore fascinating cultural museums and palaces. There is so much more to Malta though. Marvel at abundant natural wonders; from the Blue Grotto caverns to the Blue Lagoon on the tiny island of Comino, there are hilltop villages and chic fishing harbours just waiting to be visited. Comino is a great place to stop by for some quiet time. This tiny island has no cars or built-up areas and is a haven for snorkelers, walkers and photographers. Why not stop for a seafood platter or try some local dishes with a mix of Middle Eastern and Sicilian flavours on your holiday to Malta? For lovers of Game of Thrones, Mdina Gate in the old Capital is the very gate is the very gate to Kings Landing! Holidays to Malta are ideally suited to couples and families alike. Just a 3 hour flight from the UK. Something not many consider is a holiday at the waters edge on the less trod island of Gozo? The capital city, Valetta hosts many 5* hotels, perfect for a city break. Or, clamour for glamour in St George's Bay, at a resort with cascading pools and a private lido? The coastline is perfect for enjoying relaxing days in the Maltese sun. Rugged, with a good mix of rocky coves and sandy shores. Head to Bugibba or Qawra which have lovely flat rocks for sunbathing, or Mellieha Bay for its gorgeous, long stretch of sandy beach. The diving and snorkelling in Malta is excellent and Sport Diver Magazine has named Malta as the third best diving destination behind the Maldives and Egypt! Malta is a foodies paradise. Being an island surrounded by many countries, Malta's food is a fusion of European and Middle Eastern influences. The traditional fare is rustic and based on seasonality. Why not try Pastizza a traditional snack of flaky pastry filled either with ricotta cheese or mushy peas? Available in bars and street kiosks. Bragioli is a thin slice of beef wrapped around breadcrumbs, chopped bacon, egg and parsley before being braised in red wine. The favourite dish in Malta, however, is Fenek which is rabbit cooked in garlic and wine. The local cheese is called Gbejniet. Made from unpasteurised sheep or goat's milk, it is hard and white and is often served in seasoned olive oil. Local crafts produce excellent souvenirs; look out for lacework, glassware, silver and gold items. In the main resorts' market stalls and shops you will find a wide variety of suitable mementoes to pop in your suitcase, too. Holidays to Malta are as relaxing or as vibrant as you want them to be. The club scene has grown over the last few years with the main action located in Paceville in the coast near St. Julians. But if you'd much prefer to relax over a few drinks and watch the world go by there are a multitude of cafes and bars perfectly placed for quiet and tranquil evenings.

Why should the magical island of Zanzibar be on your travel wish list?

04 June 2020

Why should the magical island of Zanzibar be on your travel wish list? I have been and it really should be on there if it is not! White sands and turquoise sea Gorgeous tropical climate Excellent snorkelling & diving Local tradition & culture Fun & interesting excursions International airport Zanzibar has it all! It is easy to reach this tropical island from mainland Tanzania, either by boat or plane making it an excellent choice for a Safari 2 (or 3 or 4) stop Tanzanian adventure holiday. The Zanzibari hotel is one I highly recommend as the perfect place to either begin or end a safari tour in Tanzania. With delicious food, fun entertainment, warm hospitality & a stunning beachfront setting....I wish I was there right now. Laze on a hammock overlooking the Indian Ocean or share safari tales over a cocktail by the pool, it is simply a stunning island to unwind and recharge. Zanzibar is also ideal for those looking for the barefoot beach experience and many properties promote this relaxed way of life, whilst still offering first class service. Sunshine will follow the rain Get in touch and let me tell you more about this stunning part of the world!

Best British Beaches

15 May 2020

Lockdown may have you dreaming of distant sandy shores, but the UK has some spectacular beaches of its own. Here are six ideas for a sandy staycation. Mwnt, Wales Perfectly cut-out from the Ceredigion cliffs, the secluded cove of Mwnt is owned by the National Trust. The sheltered bay is a favourite for dolphins and seals, which are often spotted playing in the turquoise waters. The surrounding hilly cliffs create a natural wind-break for beach-bums while more active types can enjoy picturesque walks along the coastline, passing the charming 14th century Church of the Holy Cross. Luskentyre, Scotland Visit on a rare clear day and you could be forgiven for confusing Luskentyre for a beach in the Caribbean. Found on the Isle of Harris, off the west coast of Scotland, the bright white sand, emerald water and a natural backdrop of hilly terrain has resulted in Luskentyre being named one of the UK’s best beaches in the TripAdvisor Traveller Awards. Visit during the spring months to see the grassy slopes ablaze with seasonal blooms. Port Isaac, Cornwall Eagle-eyed fans may recognise this quaint fishing village in North Cornwall as the setting of TV series Doc Martin. The pretty village remains true to its humble Cornish roots with sea-battered fishing boats bobbing in the harbour and narrow streets lined with cosy and characterful cottages. Although a popular tourist spot during peak season, the crowded, pedestrian-only streets are still charming and every Friday during summer the Fisherman’s Friends male singing group put on a free gig on the beach – best watched with fish and chips in hand. Studland Bay, Dorset It’s no wonder this four-mile stretch of pale, fine sand is so loved by locals. Backed by soft, rolling dunes and natural heathland, it’s located in Dorset’s Purbeck region, with its northern tip at the entrance to Poole Harbour looking across to one of the UK’s post exclusive postcodes – Sandbanks. Sandy Studland has its own slice of luxury though – The Pig on the Beach. This shabby-chic-styled hotel is one of a chain of unique properties – all famous for their locally-sourced food. Holkham, Norfolk Reached by a walk through fragrant pine forest, this vast expanse of golden sand is backed by dunes and visited by capricious tides. Behind the shoreline lies a basin, which at high tides fills to form a spectacular shallow lagoon. It’s been featured in many films, including the closing scene of Shakespeare in Love, where Gwyneth Paltrow is shipwrecked on its shore. Nearby is Holkham Hall, an 18th century Palladian house home to the Earl of Leicester and surrounded by a 25,000 acre estate of rolling parkland. Bamburgh, Northumberland Overlooked by the romantic turrets of Bamburgh Castle, this length of wild sandy coast is backed by waving dunes and rolling green fields. It looks over to Lindisfarne and the Farne Islands – once a haven for monks and still one for puffins and other rare sea birds. A windswept walk along the beach takes in rock pools and a small lighthouse - the most northerly of its kind in mainland England. A castle is known to have stood above the beach since the 6th century and the oldest part of the present structure was built in the 12th century. Please feel to get in touch if you are looking for some staycation inspiration! I can book everything from log cabins, tucked away cottages, large houses sleeping 20+ people, quirky properties as well as those on larger seaside parks. I can also book boating holidays if you are dreaming of taking to the waters!

What I have been up to over the last 2 months....

29 April 2020

Firstly, I hope this finds you all well? The past two months have without question been a challenging time not just for those in the travel industry but the world as a whole. I wanted to take this opportunity to get in touch with everyone to let you know what I have been doing. The impact of Covid-19 was starting to really impact travel by the end of February and as we got towards the end of March, more and more countries had closed their borders and the FCO travel advice changed hourly. Not only the standard entry requirements but Visa restrictions and isolation rules. My immediate concern and focus was with those who were overseas and being immediately impacted by this. Working with Travel Counsellors 24/7 duty office to get these customers home as soon as possible. I never thought getting my customers home from Spain and the Canaries would be an issue but due to the numbers involved, I breathed a huge sigh of relief when my last customers returned home, safe and well. This also included getting people back early from Las Vegas as well as Thailand. My attention then turned to those due to depart at the end of March and into April. I have spent many hours speaking to my customers and advising them of all the different possible scenarios as well as continuing to provide up to date and accurate travel advice. The ongoing advice from the FCO of not to travel has meant that there has been great disappointment for many, especially those due to travel over the Easter period. To add further impact, many suppliers (companies) have changed their policies. Bending the “normal rules and regulations”, using creative wording to suit their own terms as well as blatantly throwing them “out of the window” which has caused frustration for many. Some airlines even flew empty planes at the start of the travel ban to avoid cancelling flights and therefore having to pay refunds. I have had numerous phone calls as these policies have changed with not only my own customers but also those that have not booked with me and are struggling to get answers from companies they have booked through, whether that be online or through other agencies. For me, my working day has not changed dramatically (apart from now having to fit home schooling a 6 and 9 year old into my day and if you are juggling work and this, I do not have to explain the challenges in any more detail!) as I work from home anyway am able to continue to be available to my customers as usual. There have been many articles written and I have seen segments on various TV shows over the last few weeks including the BBC news with individuals justifiably getting in touch with them to vent their anger at not being able to get answers. They are just getting recorded voicemail calls which cut off or are simply being ignored. I take pride in the fact that I am here to speak to you and I am still happy to provide any advice to those that are struggling to contact their providers and do the very best I can for them. For my customers who still have bookings for this year, I am doing all I can to work with them and once again cover off the different scenarios available to get the best outcome for them. This can be extending their payment dates, moving their holiday to next year to ensure they do not lose any money if they decide to cancel or have been impacted financially themselves as a result of the lock down. I also continue to work with those whose travel plans have now been cancelled to get their money back, or a credit note if they prefer as quickly as possible. It is fair to say that nothing has impacted the travel industry like this has but there are positives! I am getting more and more enquires now for next year, especially those that have had milestone plans such as “Big” Birthdays, Anniversary’s, Weddings/Honeymoons etc impacted by this as well as those wanting to ensure their celebrations or dream trip happens next year. I am grateful for the understanding and support shown by my customers. Most importantly, I hope you and your family stay safe and well and I hope to speak to you in the very near future. We will fly and sail again! Gemma

Why the Maldives is an excellent option for your October getaway!

14 April 2020

We can't help ourselves from thinking of what we are going to do once quarantine is lifted, see friends, go out for dinner or watch football at the pub but for many of us who are stuck home with kids.. It’s a holiday!! A well-deserved holiday, where you don't have to cook, clean or force your kids to do their school work. So it is no surprise that I have started to get enquiries for October half term. The Maldives is an ideal destination for an October half term holiday. Given the current uncertainty suppliers and hotels are offering reduced cancellation policies and free amendments to protect you and you can look forward to an amazing adventure! Why October Is a Great Time in The Maldives Weather Contrary to popular belief it doesn’t rain as much in the Monsoon months anymore, and when it does it is short sharp bursts and the rain quickly passes due to the low-lying nature of the islands. Half the Price! Maldives is an expensive destination, especially if you are travelling with a family. However, from the months from May to November all the hotels lower their rates and have extremely generous offers from free meal plan upgrades, free transfers, kids stay for free and free room upgrade. You can make savings of 60% on some deals and it’s a great option for a couple, group of friends or a family. Surfing It is still surfing season! A bit of wind and you get some of the best beach breaks in the world. Hotels like Six Senses Laamu, Anantara Dhigu, Niyama and Adaaran Hudhuranfushi are great places for even beginners to try surfing for the first time. Family Friendly Maldives is family friendly all year round, but in the summer months, it is exceptionally affordable. Almost all hotels come with a kids club and a kids and teens program to keep the little ones engaged from cooking classes to treasure hunts! Manta Rays and Whale Sharks It is the best time to see Manta Rays and Whale Sharks. You can see up to 200 Manta Rays at Hanifaru Bay in Baa Atoll during the feeding frenzy! The whale sharks in Ari Atoll are also more frequently spotted! Get in touch and lets plan your ultimate island adventure!

Virgin Cruises Scarlet Lady!

27 February 2020

Virgin launched the hotly anticipated Scarlet Lady with the promise that she would be very different to other cruise ships and would appeal to those that have dubbed cruising as “not for them”. First impressions, she is definitely different! From the DJ playing in the roundabout which is where you would typically find an atrium to the fact that in the standard cabins, your bed folds down into a sofa during the day and each balcony has a hammock! The vibe on board on entering was Ibiza Beach Club. You will not find a tattoo parlour or record shop on any other cruise ship as well as a Mac shop! Being adults only the entertainment is contemporary, and the nightclub looked amazing with the mirrored walls as you walk in. Unfortunately, I did not get an opportunity to experience it fully as I was on a day visit. She boasts 20 restaurants all offering a different experience, you will never be stuck for choice. The added benefit that all restaurants are included in the price you pay. My favourites were The Kitchen where you are given a menu with 6 ingredients and the chef provides dishes to showcase them. It is like a food laboratory, they are designed to delight, and all have a quirky twist, lots of surprises! The Wave at the aft of the ship serves seafood and steaks with a gorgeous panorama of the wake you are leaving behind. You will not find a typical buffet restaurant found on all other cruise ships, instead The Galley has “live” cooking stations where food is prepared as required. This is also reducing the amount of food waste on board. The Red Room entertainment venue once again offers something different compared to regular shows found on board cruise ships. The stage can be transformed into a run way and the shows are contemporary. Deck 16 is a full Al Fresco space with a real focus on health and well being. There is a boxing ring, Gym & Tonic Bar, Yoga Studio and an outdoor work out areas as well as some of the largest hot tubs found at sea. The “Band” wearable device not only enables you to enter your cabin without the need for a key card, order drinks etc from wherever you are but it will also learn what mood you like your cabin to be in. For example, the ideal temperature during the day, when to close your blinds on an evening etc! The spa is sublime and an area I would spend a lot of time in. This is included for those staying in one of the bright, airy suites but anyone can book to enjoy. Offering Elemis treatments as well as salt rooms, saunas, hot beds you can easily while away a few hours. A Virgin cruise is not for everyone, but I was left impressed with all Scarlet Lady has to offer. The food I tasted was excellent, the vibe on board was relaxed, and I would have loved to have spent more time on board! Another plus point is that WiFi/Tips/Sodas/Tea & Coffee/Yoga/Spin Classes - are all included in the price you pay. She is very instagrammable with plenty of areas to take a good selfie. Scarlet Lady is based out of Miami and her sister ship, Valiant Lady will be based in the Mediterranean next year offering 7 night itineraries including overnight stays in Ibiza. Get in touch and let me tell you so much more. There are excellent offers available now including on board credit and early booking offers.

Top tips for first time skiers

25 November 2019

If it’s your first time on a skiing holiday, you’re probably excited to get to the beautiful mountainous surroundings of your ski resort. There’s no feeling like heading out on the slopes to experience the thrill of the wind whirling past you as you glide across the powdery white snow. Skiing is an extreme sport, however, so before you go, check out our top tips for first-time skiers to make sure things go as smoothly as possible. Invest in good ski gear Before you go make sure that you buy some good quality skiing gear. It might seem a little pricey at the time and there may be cheaper options available, but remember, it’s an investment. There’s nothing worse than being out on the slopes when you’re cold and wet, so it’s best to get a jacket and salopettes that are going to keep you warm and dry. Workout before you go to build up some fitness In the weeks before you go, try to get to the gym and build up your fitness levels. Skiing can be pretty exerting (it’s not all sliding downhill) and your muscles will be given a hard workout, so it’s advisable to build up a tolerance for it. Save the pain of ‘ski legs’ and make the most of your time in resort! Take a waterproof backpack; Despite being surrounded by snow, when you’re out skiing you can get very warm and you might want to remove a couple of layers. Take a small backpack with you that you can pop them into. This will also be useful as you can pop a water bottle and some high protein snacks in there too to keep you fuelled throughout the day. Wear layers As your mum always used to tell you: “make sure you layer up when it’s cold outside” - and it’s no different with skiing. There are constant periods of activity and inactivity throughout the day and this, paired with the weather, will mean that you need to wear layers to allow you to adjust accordingly. Take some lessons before you go Your time in resort is special, and unfortunately limited, so it’s best to arrive with a few skills in your locker so that you can make the most of the excellent facilities you find there. In the UK, we now have a few dry ski slopes and indoor snow centres so get down to your local one even if its just for a few hours to cover the basics. Warm up before and cool down after skiing As with any physical exercise, it’s important to warm up before and cool down after you’ve skied to make sure that you stay injury free and feeling fresh for the next day. If you have the time, try to incorporate some stretches into your post skiing routine, especially focusing on your legs. Don’t ski alone When you first head out skiing, try to go with a friend - ideally someone with a little experience. This will allow you to ask for tips and will make sure you’ve got someone watching over you to keep you safe. Don’t overdo it on your first time A full day on the slopes is a long time so just remember it’s a marathon not a sprint. Don’t spend hours and hours on the snow on your first day skiing, because you can easily become exhausted and lose motivation, leaving you feeling worn-out come day two. Take things nice and easy and build yourself up. You will fall, so do it properly Falling in skiing is pretty much unavoidable, even for the most seasoned professionals, so you should do it safely to ensure you don’t get hurt. If you feel yourself falling, try to fall backwards to your left or right and don’t put your hands out to break your fall as you may jar your wrist. Don’t get disheartened by the occasional fall; as you get better they will become few and far between. Excitement is everywhere on a ski holiday You don’t just have to ski, as many resorts offer a whole host of other winter attractions and activities. Travel to St Moritz in Switzerland and wander through premium brand stores and boutiques at Via Serlas, Europe’s highest shopping street. Taste delicious treats at the Ben & Jerry’s factory in Stowe, Vermont; snowboard in France’s Alpine Chamonix resort or take a dip in the ‘onsen’ hot springs in Niseko – Japan’s number one ski resort. When night falls, there’s always a chance to let your hair down at one of the après parties… and skiers certainly know how to party! To book your first skiing holiday, give me a call today and take advantage of a personal service and exclusive benefits including full financial protection and a 24-hour duty office ready to assist you before, during and after your trip.

Our Summer Norwegian Fjords Cruise

15 October 2019

Cruise & Maritime normally operate their cruises as adults only but a few times a year then open them up as “Multi Generation cruises” where all ages are welcome. We cruised the Norwegian Fjords 3 years ago and having fallen in love with the breath-taking scenery and amazing Norwegian people we decided to go back. Sailing from Liverpool was another major draw as it meant we avoided the longer drive to Southampton. Embarkation was quick and easy and within an hour of arriving at the port we were on board. Our bags had already been delivered to our cabin, so it was a quick unpack and we went to explore. Magellan the ship we were on is very different to other cruise ships I have experienced. They are classed as 3* ships and are smaller than a lot other cruise lines but she had everything we needed. As they are traditionally adults only the facilities onboard for children are limited. However, this was a bonus for us as during our last cruise the children just wanted to be in the kids’ club and we never had dinner together on an evening as they wanted to be off with their friends. The focus area for them on this cruise was the table tennis table where they spent many hours playing various games with the other children onboard. The staff did put on a few activities aimed at them such as treasure hunts, the famous “egg drop” competition etc but they were content just “hanging out”. Out first port of call was Dublin, a city I had lived in for 6 months, so it was fantastic to revisit our favourite restaurant and spend some time back in the famous Temple Bar area and enjoyed a Guinness at the Guinness museum. From here we had a day at sea before arriving into Lerwick. Lerwick was as a I expected, a beautiful town that feels relatively untouched but is gaining in popularity due to the Shetlands programme. We didn’t book any tours and simply enjoyed having a wonder round and taking in the stunning coastline. From Lerwick we sailed North and arrived at our first Norwegian port, Bergen. As Magellan is a smaller ship we were docked much closer to the city centre meaning the walk was not as long as we had done on our last visit. Bergen is a city that must be experienced. It has a real mix of old and new and it isn’t hard to understand why is a World Heritage City. The world heritage site consists of the old Hanseatic wharf and buildings that are all built in wood and are fascinating. You can easily spend a good hour here just wondering though the small walk ways and exploring the labyrinth of floors that make up the buildings. The Town Square seems to always have a fish market on (or at least it has been there on both of my visits) where you can buy local delicacies and ogle at the gigantic crabs and colourful seafood on offer. Most stalls also sell street food at relatively cheap prices compared to restaurant dining in Norway. Next, we arrived in Olden, and here we took our only pre-booked excursion of the whole cruise to Briksdal Glacier. We did the same trip 3 years ago and loved it even more the second time around. The walk takes circa one hour to get to the Glacier and the scenery and majestic waterfalls on the walk are simply stunning. My boys loved getting drenched by the spray as the waterfall gushed down the hillside. The colours in the Glacier are hard to describe, the bluest of blue. It is an experience I would recommend to anyone, especially with the depressing fact that the Glacier will not last forever. It has unfortunately already shrunk a lot since our last visit. The next day we arrived in Geiranger which is a small town and offers a variety of trips up into the mountains. We just pottered around and enjoyed the lovely weather back on the ship. Our next stop was the resort of Flam with it’s famous railway. In hindsight we should have pre-booked a trip on the train as it gets very busy and is of course very popular. Instead we decided to take a little local train around the area that took us out into the countryside and enabled us to learn more about how the local people live, especially before the area became a hub for cruise ships. We then cruised the Eidjford, this is another area we hadn’t experienced before and have to say it was an unexpected highlight. The weather was amazing and canoeing or taking a rib on the fjord is a must. It is hard to find words to explain just how beautiful the Fjords are but Eidjford and sailing out of the Fjords that night under a stunning sunset was a perfect way to end our time before we arrived at the more commercialised town of Stavanger. Whilst in Stavanger visit the old town, it is full of quaint independent shops set along beautiful flower and tree lined cobbled streets with many bars and cafes to enjoy. A great way to finish our cruise before our final day at sea. The food on board was excellent, and we dined in one of the two main restaurants most evenings. There is a buffet restaurant you can also opt for if you want something a little less formal. However, whilst we did have two formal evenings on board (a wonderful opportunity for us all to glam up) the dress code is mainly casual which made a nice change to other cruises I have done. The crew were incredibly friendly and adored my boys as they do not often see children with it mainly being an adult only ship. Drinks are very reasonably priced, but my two boys loved working their way through the mocktails list! The drinks package we purchased included bottled water, speciality teas and coffees as well as all the soft and alcoholic selections available. We had a wonderful time exploring the Fjords again and a brilliant time on board Magellan and I will definitely sail with Cruise & Maritime again. They offer amazing value for money and a less formal environment. Please feel free to get in touch if you would like further information on this or any other cruise. It truly is one of the best ways to see the world!

Best places to travel while pregnant

13 September 2019

Travelling whilst pregnant can be a daunting prospect especially for first-time parents but it should not put you off. Below I have listed some of my best places to travel while pregnant; The Costa Del Sol; With 325 days of sunshine a year, 126 sandy beaches (many Blue Flag), a clutch of lively seaside resorts and a vast choice of hotels, including both luxury and all-inclusive options, the Costa del Sol is a justifiably popular year-round destination within just a couple hours’ flight time of the UK. One of Europe’s best-known holiday hotspots, as well as the home to a large expat community, the 160km ‘Coast of the Sun’ – part of the Andalucía region – includes the province of Málaga, the city of Málaga and famous seaside resorts including Benalmádena, Torremolinos and Marbella. The Costa del Sol has eight Michelin-starred restaurants, four of them in Marbella, as well as the foodie pilgrimage site of Benahavís village. If you are feeling active, the beautiful towns of Rhonda and Granada are very easy to get to and car hire is recommended. Malaga, often overlooked as an airport town is stunning and is very popular now as a city break. Boasting a quaint Old Town, lovely long promenade as well as a beach all within easy walking distance it is a great choice for a mini-moon. Ras Al Khaimah; Offering a quieter pace to its neighbour Dubai. Ras Al Khaimah is perfect for those wanting to travel a little further afield, or want guaranteed winter sunshine whilst still enjoying the luxury associated with the UAE. Many hotels here offer excellent All-Inclusive inclusions and most have their own private beach giving you time to relax and kickback. Literally translated as ‘top of the tent’ due to its location at the northernmost tip of the Arabian Peninsula, Ras Al Khaimah offers something for everyone to enjoy. Home to a unique combination of dreamy beaches, soaring mountains, stunning terracotta deserts, luxurious resorts and lovely year-round sunshine, enchanting Ras Al Khaimah offers the ideal setting for both relaxation and adventure. If your other half is a thrill seeker then this destination is perfect. The majestic mountain range of Jebel Jais offers myriads of adventure activities, including mountain biking, rock climbing and hiking. Standing as the UAE’s tallest mountain, Jebel Jais is also home to the world’s longest zip line – the Jebel Jais Flight, where you will reach speeds of between 120- 150kph over its 2.8-kilometre course. For a quieter pace, the Suwaidi Pearl Farm if well worth a visit. Here you will glimpse into the emirate’s incredible era of pearling. It is the only pearl farm in the region that offers an insight into this unique tradition. Located at the foot of the majestic Al Hajar mountain range in the northern town of Al Rams, your excursion starts as you board a traditional pearling boat to reach the pearl farm itself. The undoubted highlight of your tour though will be the array of immersive activities that are on offer, including an oyster opening experience, a fascinating mangrove tour and a traditional lunch in the village. You can even enjoy an underwater dive to find and keep your very own pearl. Cruising; Taking a cruise is an excellent choice for parents to be. Whether it is a fly-cruise where you sail from an overseas port or take advantage of the many cruises that now depart from the UK, a cruise will give you the option to do as little, or as much as you like. You will get the opportunity to visit destinations that you might not have thought possible whilst pregnant but on your terms. Just because you are on a cruise, it does not mean you have to get off at every port, nor are you obliged to book the cruise ship excursions. Many cruise ports offer easy access to the main city enabling you to decide how active you want to be that day and you can simply go and explore yourself. If you do pre-book a trip, you will be taken from the port to your destination and back again leaving you to simply sit back and relax. Onboard there are many different restaurants for you to enjoy and if the menu is not right for you on that day, the chefs are amazing and will do everything they can to accommodate your wishes. Many cruise lines offer West-End style shows plus comedians, singers, live music bars, a casino, basically if you can think of a way to be entertained, I am sure you will find it onboard. However, there are always quieter areas of the ship where you can relax with a book and watch the ocean go by. It really is one of the most relaxing ways to see the world. Each cruise line also has its own doctor on board who is on hand should anyone need any medical assistance. Gran Canaria; Known as the ‘miniature continent’, where no two landscapes are the same, Gran Canaria is the ideal place for your next luxury getaway. From soothing spas and rolling golf greens to golden sandy beaches and vibrant city streets, this sun-kissed island paradise offers a variety of unique experiences to impress even the most discerning of travellers. Delve into the vibrant outdoor living culture of the colourful capital of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. Home to the wonderful Las Canteras beach and a beautiful historic quarter boasting pretty cobbled streets and a variety of architectural styles from late Gothic to Renaissance, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria is not to be missed. Gran Canaria offers sophisticated and delightful gastronomy, with dishes based on traditional recipes and locally-sourced, natural ingredients; all with modern twists to awaken the senses. The tantalising taste adventure that Gran Canaria serves up is embodied by its range of markets, featuring fresh food and restaurants converted from traditional stalls, as well as local delicacies such as honey rum and salted fish Gran Canaria offers a fantastic choice of luxury 5* resort hotels, offering amazing pools, gourmet restaurants and great entertainment. New boutique hotels are popping up all over the island, bringing out cutting-edge design and high-tech features. What’s more, if you are planning a winter getaway, it is ideal for getting some winter sun without having to fly further afield. Get in touch if you would like to discuss any of the above destinations or would like more ideas on other best places to travel while pregnant!”

Top 15 Wedding Destinations Abroad

01 July 2019

I work alongside a team of wedding experts who are based at Travel Counsellors Head Office in Manchester to ensure couples get the very best wedding possible. I can draw upon my previous weddings I have booked and their wealth of knowledge on where to go and why. The most popular destinations listed below for weddings and the reasons why may just give you some ideas for planning your own! • CYPRUS- A variety of hotels and venues on offer to suit all types of budgets. There are a lot of all-inclusive hotels available which are popular for couples and guests alike. Some even let the wedding party use the all-inclusive drinks package for the wedding day! There is accommodation to suit all budgets, ages and tastes so can cater for all guests budgets. Nice and easy legalities here! • PORTUGAL- In Portugal they offer stunning high quality hotels with a high standard of food and great venues on site to choose from, Many with lovely views. Portugal is a great family destination with great beaches. Again Portugal has lots of different accommodation to suit all budgets. Portugal is great for large wedding parties. Low cost flights on offer! • ITALY - Italy has some of the most stunning views to offer whilst our couples say their vows, Italy can offer very unique and wow venues, a lot of the venues are very rustic and beautiful so not much decoration is needed here couples can keep it nice and simple! Italy can offer weekend stays for guests so they don’t have to commit to a week’s holiday. It is a nice short flight over and low cost flights on offer. Italy also offers some great food. • MAURITIUS –Mauritius offers some of the most gorgeous beaches in the Indian Ocean so feet on the sand weddings is a must here! We have some great luxury hotels to offer here with low price wedding packages. Mauritius is ideal for smaller wedding parties or just the couple themselves and perfect for a nice laid back high quality ceremony. Mauritius also offers easy legalities. • MEXICO- Mexico offers great beaches, lots of Luxury hotels to choose from. Our hotels offer low price wedding packages and special offers. Great night life on offer if guests want this from their stay. • ST LUCIA- Great sandy beaches, luxury hotels on offer for weddings , great for feet on the sand weddings. St Lucia offers very easy legalities so if you have a last minute wedding to arrange and you want it abroad St Lucia can cater for this! • SANTORINI – Santorini offers stunning white washed hotels and Venus with breath taking views of the Caldera, Santorini offers stunning sunsets which is a great photograph opportunity! • ZANTE- Zante is great for couples who don’t want to spend a great amount of money on their wedding abroad, it offers some very laid back style venues such as a casual beach ceremony with a BBQ and meze style reception to follow. Zante is great for families and there is a good choice of accommodation to suit all budgets • MALTA- Malta offers some unique and wow factor venues, great value wedding packages to offer here. Malta is great for church weddings. Malta is Ideal for families and great for large wedding parties • BARBADOS- Barbados offers some stunning hotels and beaches, feet on the sand weddings is a must here! There are Luxury family or adult only hotels to choose from. Very easy legalities. The locals are extremely friendly and with Barbados being such a small island you can explore the whole island over a couple of days. Night life available outside the hotels if some of the guests want this from their stay • CROATIA- Croatia offers some stunning hotels/venues with fantastic views, very good alternative to Italy, great for families. • RHODES- Rhodes has a variety of hotels and venues to offer for all budgets. Rhodes can offer All Inclusive hotels and there is accommodation to suit all budgets, ages and tastes. Rhodes can offer weddings for couples on a budget if needed as not too expensive. • ANTIGUA – Antigua offers some of the most gorgeous beaches and luxury hotels. We have low price wedding packages to offer here and Antigua is ideal for smaller wedding parties or just the couple themselves • NEW YORK - A city wedding ideal for smaller wedding parties or just the couple themselves. Couples who go here tend to want a no fuss wedding ceremony and reception set in this famous city. New York offers nice and simple legalities. Great photo opportunities here! • THAILAND- Thailand offers stunning beaches so feet on the sand weddings is most popular here, great food and a great place to exchange your vows. Thailand can offer Western or Thai wedding ceremonies, so the couple can have a traditional Buddhist ceremony if they want something a little different to the western ceremony. If you’re thinking about having your very own destination wedding please feel free to get in touch and I will be more than happy to discuss all the amazing options available for you!

GoldenEye Resort Jamaica

04 June 2019

GoldenEye has a history dating back to 1939 when Ian Fleming was recruited by Her Majesty’s British Naval Intelligence to be a formal commander during the war. This title was the reason he found himself on the island when enemy boats sailed the Caribbean seas. Officially, GoldenEye itself was around in 1942 although not as a hotel, as a navel operation leading to Ian falling in love with Jamaica, and an awe-inspiring future was set to inspire the world. Fast forward eight years, a house was built surrounded by trees on all sides except one, where the sea meets the shore. In more recent years, Chris Blackwell opens the doors of GoldenEye in 2011 to the public as ‘Caribbean’s Number One New Boutique Hotel’. Stay: Comprising of villas, lagoon cottages and the new beach huts, this gorgeous hotel is at one with nature and each room is in a world of its own. Imagine rainfall showers, standalone baths lazing in private outdoor space, swaying hammocks and views of the mountains and lush tropical gardens. For guests choosing the Lagoon Cottages, each have king size beds positioned to face Santa Maria Island and are all located steps away from the Low Cay Beach, not to mention direct access into the lagoon and additional use of kayaks, just for fun. Eat: GoldenEye has six dining options to choose from including in-room and outdoor dining, low key barbeque bars and an international cuisine tree house namely The Gazebo. Jamaican Jerk is served in the Bamboo Bar with sand underfoot and the local fishermen delivering their catch of the day. Breakfast and lunch are served in Bizot Bar, with fresh salads, delicious burgers and pasta dishes and of course, serving Jamaican specialty food overlooking the blue sea and fresh-water swimming pool. Field Spa: A true retreat style resort would be nothing without a natural, calming spa. GoldenEye’s FieldSpa is surrounded by plants, trees and water and of course, is intensely restorative. Guests can succumb to relaxation with a hot stone massage, or release stress energy with deep muscle therapy from intuitive therapist Lyndale. Unusual to some, FeildSpa hosts vibrational sound healing and healing water baths along with more well-known treatments including manicures, facials and body wraps.

Was your last family holiday actually a holiday?

23 May 2019

When you think back to your last family holiday, what memories spring to mind? Did you get the time to relax and recharge? Were mealtimes chilled and everyone really enjoyed their food, even the children? Did the children get an opportunity to experience a different culture? Was there a great range of activities on offer both during the day and on an evening that everyone enjoyed? Or was this the reality? The book you took to read still looks brand new as you spent your entire holiday rescuing inflatables. Meals were stressful as you either had the same food every evening from the same buffet and watching your children eat chips for the 7th night running was starting to drive you crazy. Meals were over in 30 minutes….on a good day. You did not leave the hotel/resort as the excursions on offer were not suitable for families? Whilst you enjoyed your glass of wine on an evening, if you heard “that song” again you might lose your mind? The answer….a family cruise! Why? Family cruise ships offer everything you will find in a typical 5* hotel plus so much more, especially when you look at Royal Caribbean’s Quantum Class ships. The facilities offered to all are unparalled. There are children’s clubs for all ages from 6 months to 17 years, Adventure On The Ocean that offer an unbelievable range of experiences. These also include educational activities to keep even the most active children entertained and engaged. Parents of children aged 3-5 will be given a pager so you are kept informed on how your child is doing always, giving you the perfect opportunity to read that book! With the H2O Water Zone and Splashaway Bay onboard offering water cannons, tipping buckets as well as the Ultimate Abyss, the world’s tallest slide at sea (you literally plummet 10 stories) water babies as well as thrill seekers are catered for. Where else would you find a Flo Ryder (they promise anyone can do it, even us parents), a Rockwall that spans 30 feet (get to the top and ring the bell!), Zipcord which is a sky diving capsule, Skypad which gives a bungee/trampoline experience and the Oasis Class ships even have Zip Lines. Remember this is only a taste of what is available outside! Inside you will find the Seaplex which is a multi-functional area changing from a full-size basketball court to an ice-skating rink to bumper cars. The flying trapeze is a hit with everyone, they have had 80+ year olds performing amazing acrobatics in the air. Wi-Fi connected games consoles are great for stopping the teens feeling they are cut off from their friends. Meals times are a delight for all and the younger members of your family can go for an early dinner where fresh cooked meals are always served (table or buffet style), drop them off to have a fabulous time at their club and you choose which of the 20+ dining venues you are going to enjoy. There are so many different entertainment venues for you to enjoy the hardest thing will be deciding which one to go to. There is even a Bionic Bar where you are served by Biotic Bar Tenders. With Broadway Shows, Comedians, Movies under the stars, Singers, the casino, you get the idea, there is so much on offer. These ships are not floating hotels, they are floating resorts! If you sail from Southampton, there is the added benefit of no airport ques or luggage allowance. Your children can take as many teddies as they wish, no one needs to be left behind! The thing I absolutely love about cruising with my children is also the sense of adventure. When else will you be able to unpack once, travel through the night and wake up in a different place to explore every morning? You do not have to take pre-planned trips. Many ports enable you to walk straight into a city discover at your own pace. It really is unique! Please feel free to get in touch and let me help you plan your perfect family adventure!

Expedition Cruising with Hurtigruten - What to expect?

04 May 2019

Visiting destinations that are not easily accessible such as the Antarctic, Artic and the Galapagos islands are rapidly moving up individuals bucket lists and cruising is one of the only ways to truly get into these areas. One of the best things about these cruises is that they are perfectly suited to those that may not have cruised before and Hurtigruten are really leading the way. They are pioneers in sustainability and are the first cruise line to ban single use plastic and their goal is to become the world’s first plastic free shipping company which they are well on their way to becoming. Their new ships will reduce fuel consumption by up to 20% and for the first time, fully electric propulsion on a passenger ship will be possible! They are not like a normal cruise operator in the sense that their focus is on the destination. You will spend your time with like minded adventurers and will not find waterslides or a dress code. What you will find is excellent food, a relaxed atmosphere and everything you need to truly explore and experience your destination. Every cruise has an expert on board. These experts are the key to unlocking these amazing places. They provide expert knowledge on geography, history, wildlife and more. The new expedition ships which are launching over the next two years boast large observation platforms on several decks for guests to get up close to nature and wildlife. Six out of ten cabins will have their own balcony, and two out of every ten will be suites. The vessels will have three restaurants with menus reflecting local flavors and destinations. A special pool deck will include infinity pools, hot tubs, and cocktail bars so you can still enjoy the finer things in life. Not only this, but they will also have the tallest LED screen at sea. However, these will not be showing the latest block buster but beaming back images that the underwater drones are taking, enabling guests to fully immerse themselves in not just the scenery but what is happening underneath them. Cruises are on sale up to 2021 with many already showing limited availability so get in touch and let me guide you through the different options available. 01484 490026 gemma.favager@travelcounsellors.com

Are you an active family? Do your children love to try something new? How about a cruise?

04 April 2019

Are you an active family? Do your children love to try something new? Cruising? Cruise ships are now so popular with families and once you have ventured onboard, it is hard to go back to a land based holiday. Part of this is down to the amazing facilities on board the ships but also the real travel experiences it gives every member of your family, regardless of their age. Cruising also works amazingly well for multi-generational family holidays as everyone can do as little or a much as they like and can easily build their holiday to suit them but with the added benefit of all being able to get together to discuss your days adventures. Taking Norwegian Cruise Lines cruise ship Norwegian Encore as an example. It has children’s clubs with different activities constantly on offer from the Guppies Programme (6 months up to 3 years) right through to the Entourage Club for the teens (up to 17 years) You can also go on the stomach churning plunge slide, zoom around hairpin turns as you race for the checkered flag on the largest race track at sea, enjoy the futuristic laser tag centre which is the largest open air laser tag venue at sea or get lost in a virtual reality maze! Such a varied activity programme is normally only found in larger Caribbean resorts where as you can enjoy all of this without having to get to get on a plane. There are many sailings that now depart from Southampton and what’s more, with these sailings you have no luggage allowance, so your children can take as many teddies as they like! Whilst the kids are off expending their energy you can relax in the spa, take a swim, enjoy a coffee and that book you have been meaning to read for ages or sip on a cocktail as you watch your last port of call slip into the sunset. If you have a larger family, then a cruise can solve all your problems of finding accommodation that accommodates everyone. Many ships now have suites/cabins that sleep more than 4, Norwegian Encore have suites that sleep 8. Taking your family on a cruise holiday is like no other holiday you will have experienced. With a huge range of bars and restaurants to choose from, world class entertainment to fabulous destinations all without having to unpack! Having done our first family cruise 2 years ago, I cannot recommend it enough especially if you like resorts with lots going on. Please get in touch and let me talk to you about the different options available and put together your perfect family holiday experience.

My time on board the brand new MSC Bellissima

07 March 2019

I was fortunate enough to be on the MSC Bellissima launch this week and she is a ship I will be recommending to many customers! I was so impressed with the range of facilities on offer and her innovation really stood out. Starting with families and those looking for an active break MSC Bellissima has so much to offer. There are spacious pool areas with a choice of multiple outdoor as well as an indoor pool available, the Aquapark with a brilliant selection of full slides, 5 fun children’s clubs covering all ages from babies to teens complete with a sports hall, a great virtual reality interactive area with F1 Simulator (I had a go on this and could not stop spinning, Lewis Hamilton I will never be) the Virtual Reality Maze and brilliant virtual reality Cinema, full size bowling alley and an ice cream parlour! The facilities on onboard MSC Bellissima outshine the vast majority of 5* European hotels. For those adults that like to keep fit whilst away, there is also a huge Technogym as well as a 328-metre Power Walking track. MSC Bellissima has been tagged as one of the most innovative at sea. From the easy to navigate mobile app that lets you check in online and view your ports of call, book excursions, and view activities available prior to embarkation to the innovative Zoe (she is the world’s First Artificial Intelligence cruise assistant) who is there to look after you in your cabin. From advising on the weather, activities on board, specific children’s clubs, to turning on your television, Zoe will personalise the way you get cruise information. I absolutely loved the central Promenade which is lit by a changing LED roof. At a magnificent 96 m this airy central promenade is filled with boutiques, restaurants and tranquil spots for shopping, eating and relaxing. On an evening it is also used as a central area for entertainment. Not to mention the 20 restaurants and 12 bars, you can have a different experience daily! I was particularly impressed with the Yacht Club that will be relevant to those who want to have the choice of using the different restaurants, bars and entertainment facilities but also like luxury and having a dedicated area that offers an opportunity to unwind in a quieter area. The cabins have a more luxurious feel. You have complimentary access to the stunning Aurea Spa, your own private dining room, bar, 24-hour butler service as well as private outdoor deck space and pool only available to those in the Yacht Club category. It really does give you a luxury cruise within a cruise option. It is also great for those wanting to do a multi-generational cruise whereby some members of the party like to have an area to retreat to! Boasting 2 unique Cirque du Soleil shows, a huge casino, theatre lounges, numerous bars including a British Pub and Champagne bar you will never be stuck for something to do of an evening. I was able to sample various food in the speciality restaurants and the quality was excellent. Favourites for me were Kaito Teppanyaki (complete with show cooking from the chef) and Kaito Sushi. However, dinner in the main restaurant was excellent. I nipped into the buffet restaurant at breakfast and it had everything you could wish for. MSC Bellissima surpassed my expectations and I am truly impressed with all she has to offer. Please feel free to get in touch with me and let me tell you more! She is sailing around the Med this summer before moving to Arabia for the winter and there are some amazing deals available. These are a few to give you an idea; sailing on the 07th December from Dubai around the Emirates from £1149 per person including the Premium Drinks package (and flights from Manchester) Or, enjoy Christmas in the Sun from £1699 including the Premium Drinks Package sailing on the 21st December!

A Magical Time in Lapland

31 December 2018

What a week in Lapland! Having booked numerous families to Lapland I decided this year is the year the Favagers will also experience it for ourselves. My husband and I have both skied twice before and given the fact that our boys are now 8 and 5 we felt it would be a great time to introduce them to something we both love so much. Due to this, we came to Lapland for a week to combine the hunt for the big man himself with some skiing. What an amazing week we have had! I often get asked whether Lapland is worth the expense as let’s be honest, it is never going to be a cheap holiday. The answer is categorically yes! From the minute you tell them they are going, you are in a magical bubble. Even checking in at the airport is an experience as everyone is full of festive cheer and seeing the boys faces as they stepped off the plane to snow was wonderful. The boys have never skied before so we booked them private lessons to make the most of our time here, but the ski school is excellent and I did not spot any child who wasn’t at least on the long button lift runs by the end of the week. Mine totally loved it and are now competent skiers who not only went down several blue runs but were also equally happy on the red. They have already left me behind! Ruka the resort we stayed in must be one of the best for beginner skiers in Finland as there are so many different runs for them to do and experience 5 different types of ski lifts! The slopes are incredibly well maintained, and all the instructors are very friendly. The most we had to wait for a lift was the gondola and that was 5 minutes maximum. Many none skiers use this as a way of seeing both sides of the valley and a new one is currently being built to further improve the experience. Our apartments were 400m walk from the main village with beautiful views. The village has everything you need from a variety of eating establishments and bars as well as a super market. If you are looking for lively nightlife it would probably be a little too quiet but for us it was perfect, and families are very welcome everywhere. Even though we came for the week we still experienced the activities you associate with a trip to Lapland. Visiting Santa Claus in his Secret Cottage did not disappoint. He was fabulous and took the time to explain to the children with the help of his map where his post office is (Rovaniemi), the work shop (hidden away in a remote part of Lapland, where not even the local children can get to as it is so remote and located in a cave) and the reason he and Mrs Claus made the decision to move from the North Pole. Watching the dawning realisation that the letters Mr and Mrs Claus were holding were my boys own handwritten letters is something I will never forget. It was a relaxed experience and it was lovely to watch the children go off and look around, then come back and ask Santa Claus questions repeatedly meant they got more time with him than they would in a more traditional meeting. Visiting the Reindeer farm was lovely, and we had the opportunity to go on a sleigh ride as well as feed them. I wanted to take a reindeer home myself but had to settle for buying my youngest a fluffy reindeer teddy. The final activity we had was the huskies! I have been on a husky ride previously and really enjoyed meeting the dogs and being pulled along. This time was even better! My husband and I both got to drive our own pack of 5 dogs, each with a child in the sleigh. Every one of us stated that this was the best experience of the whole holiday! The sheer power from the 5 dogs was something I will never forget, even when I had both feet on the breaks, they were still pulling my son and I along the snow. We did a 25km safari with them and the huskies were in their element. We all want to do this again. The laughter we shared on this holiday was immense. We all belly laughed repeatedly! I honestly cannot recommend a Lapland trip enough. I have had the pleasure of booking several families on different experiences throughout the end of November and December (these include 2- and 3-night trips) and everyone has said the same, it was the trip of a lifetime and they wished they’d had more time there. We had a week, and I would have happily stayed for longer.

An amazing week in Brazil!

22 November 2018

Brazil is a country that offers so many different experiences and I was fortunate to visit three different regions during my work “fam trip” this October. After a brief layover in Lisbon, we were on our way to Rio De Janeiro! Rio airport is huge (so much so that the cleaning staff wear roller blades) but incredibly efficient. We were out of the terminal and on our way within 30 minutes of leaving the plane. It is the first time I have ever got off an international flight to find our bags already on the carousel. Our first hotel was right on Copacabana Beach (yes, I was singing the song constantly!) There are an abundance of bars and restaurants on the seafront and it is very clean. There are also incredible sand sculptures to enjoy. One thing that struck me is how much sport is played on the beach. Due to jetlag, I was up at 5am and there were already teams of people playing various sports and running. Our hotel, the Rio Pestana Atlantica was in a prime location and incredibly comfortable. The beds were huge, something I know now is very common with this hotel chain and it offers a beautiful panoramic view of the beach and Sugar Loaf Mountain from its rooftop terrace and pool. On day two we headed straight to Sugar Loaf Mountain. Do not be put off visiting this amazing landmark if you do not like heights. Whilst it is very high, the cable cars are huge and even in wind, hardly move at all. The views are breath-taking. Advance timed tickets are not available, so a top tip would always be to get there as early as you can. In the peak season, the queues can be very long. After a wonderful meal in a Churrascaria (I have never seen an accompanying buffet like it) we headed to The Carnival Factory. I knew Rio Carnival was huge, but I didn’t understand the competitiveness that exists between the Samba schools or the origins of the different slave cultures that brought Samba to life. We were very fortunate to go inside a Samba school and see how this year’s floats are developing. The final floats are not revealed until Carnival day, so no pictures were allowed. The Carnival judges will then decide who will be the winning Samba school, a huge accolade. If you want to be in Rio during Carnival, always book well in advance. Most hotels have a minimum of a four-night stay. We can even arrange for you to take part in the actual Carnival! The last stop of the day was Christ The Redeemer. This iconic monument has been on my bucket list for years and I still pinch myself that I stood right in front of it. When we arrived, I was in a bit of a panic as the clouds had really closed in and nothing was visible. Then they parted, and he was revealed in spectacular glory. The fact that the monument kept clearing and then disappearing further added to the majesty and experience. You can pre-book an allocated time to visit Christ The Redeemer and I recommend you do this. Also, take the funicular up rather than the coach, the views of Rio below and the favelas (which are completely fascinating) are once again fabulous. Day three we spent time exploring more of Rio and it really is a city that can offer so many different experiences. Highlights include Escadaria Selarón Mosaic Steps (Snoop Dogg and Pharrell Williams filmed the video for "Beautiful" here). The intricate artwork on the steps covers every area of the world and is magnificent. The street art in general around Rio is stunning, I constantly took pictures, they are that good. We also enjoyed a stop off at Rio Cathedral and shopping in downtown Rio. It is much cheaper than Copacabana Beach and if you love flipflops, you can buy genuine Havaianas for around £5-9 per pair! An enjoyable last evening in Rio was spent at a Samba club where a few caipirinhas were enjoyed! Salvador A quick and efficient two-hour flight to Salvador with Avienca and we arrived at the Pestana Convento de Carmo in Salvador. This hotel is a converted convent and is full of so much character. Salvador is the former capital of Brazil and I do not think I have been anywhere that has so much passion for its cultural heritage and history. It is alive with music, from the different street bars to the Olodum that practice in the streets. Michael Jackson was so taken with the beat these drums make that he filmed “They don’t care about us” in the historic district. Over the next two days we explored so much, from the church that took over 300 years to build by the slaves to the beautiful beaches and hotels on the seafront to zip lining. We enjoyed an amazing show that showcased the different gods the various slave nationalities believe in and the intense Capoeira. How the men that do this breath-taking martial arts/dance do not kill each other is beyond me. I can totally understand why it baffled the guards that kept them captive. The Sand Dune Reserve offered a totally different experience and was so tranquil, the conversation work they are doing here is vital to conserve this natural area. I loved Rio, but Salvador gave me a totally different perspective of Brazil and all that has made it the country it is today. Also, the carnival here is just as big as Rio but more accessible as it is not as commercialised. Our final stop was Praia Do Forte which is a beautiful seaside resort. It offers the perfect place to kick back and relax after exploring two amazing cities. Imbassi has a great collection of beachside restaurants and bars and you can take a wonderful boat ride down the estuary to the sea. Praia Do Forte again has a variety of wonderful eateries and wonderful quirky Pousadas. The turtle conversation project is worth a visit as well! I left Brazil feeling as though I had opened the curtains a little and peeked in. It is so diverse and has so much to offer every traveller. I will return and cannot wait to see even more of this fabulous country. Please get in touch if you want any further information on this magnificent country. I dined in some fabulous restaurants, boutique luxurious hotels (that had the feel of a private villa), contemporary and quirky hotels to more mainstream establishments and have so many recommendations to suit every style of holiday as well as being able to totally tailor the holiday to you!

Our Summer Scottish Adventure

21 September 2018

My eldest has been nagging us for some time that he was desperate to go to Loch Ness as it was the first holiday he went on at six weeks old and really wanted to see whether he could be the one to find the elusive Nessie! The decision was made after we spent a wonderful Spring Bank Holiday in Loch Lomond that this year we would have a “staycation”. Given the fact that Loch Ness is a good 7 hours+ drive from us we decided to combine a week in Loch Ness with experiencing other areas of the Highlands that we have never discovered before. We arrived at our fabulous cottage on the outskirts of Oban which shared a courtyard and garden space with six other cottages. The facilities for children were excellent with table tennis, badminton, swing ball and lots of space for running around and playing hide and seek. The sun was also shining! If you ever visit Oban and like seafood you must eat at the seafood hut which is next door to the ferry terminal. It literally is a hut at the side of the harbour with long wooden tables and chairs for you to sit and enjoy your delights alongside other diners. Our first experience was at 10.30am when we were going to pick up or ferry tickets to get across to Staffa. My 4-year-old is a huge fan of mussels and seeing them ready cook decided it was the perfect time of the day to sample them. How can you say no to a request for mussels? Marshal my 7-year-old plumped for the smoked salmon. Both were delicious and literally seemed to melt in your mouth! We went again the second day where more mussels and a seafood platter were devoured. The whole meal cost under £20 and given the fact that our seafood platter included huge Langoustines, crab legs, king prawns, mussels, squid and salmon really was excellent value for money! Fingal’s Cave on Staffa was fascinating, and I found it hard to believe that the perfectly formed Hexagons were not man made. It was a sight I will never forget, and I am so pleased we went to see it and enjoy the beauty and tranquillity of Staffa and the Isle of Mull. We also saw many seals with their pups and the majestic Sea Eagles. The Isle of Skye was next, and we stayed on the stunning Isle of Rassay (google it, we were literally on a dot in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean). As we had no plans to do anything on Rassay but enjoy the island we decided to leave the car on the Isle of Skye. The boys loved taking their own back packs and the feeling that we were on a real adventure. Rassay did not disappoint and the scenery was once again stunning. It is teaming with wildlife and we were so fortunate to see red deer running across the fields, seal eagles, and Oyster Catchers shouting at twilight. Before making our way back to mainland Scotland we made a quick detour to see the Fairy Pools. It was the only day we had real rain (yes, I am taking about Scotland in August, the weather has been amazing) and the heavens opened just as were enjoying the falls. The drenching was worth it though and if we had had more time it would have been brilliant to walk to the next falls and really get into the mountains. We arrived at Loch Ness, nine nights into our Scotland adventure very happy and relaxed, ready to see what the next seven nights had to offer. As we were staying at Loch Ness for seven nights we made sure our cabin had a private hot tub and what a view we had from it! We spent many hours looking for Nessie and drinking in the scenery. We had the most amazing week at Loch Ness and the weather was so kind to us. My recommendations include; Taking a RIB (ridged inflatable boat) on Loch Ness. Zipping along was a fabulous way to explore the Loch from the actual water and a real highlight for my boys. If you decide to go to Dores, taking the route on the opposite side of Loch Ness (the B862) is a must do. The scenery is unbelievable and whilst I am not a big bird fan, even I was impressed when we spotted an elusive Osprey just chilling out in one of the trees. Dores is only a small village but the Dores Inn is very welcoming (the food that was being served looked good and was the typical Scottish style portions i.e. large). The beach had a spectacular view of the Loch and we also got to meet the longest serving Nessie hunter! Steve Feltham has been searching for Nessie since 1991 and has set up home in a convertible mobile library on the shores. I really enjoyed reading about how he has adapted his life to cope with life on the banks of Loch Ness and the adventures he has had along the way whilst searching for Nessie. If you are a Harry Potter fan you will be familiar with the famous viaduct that is always shown when Harry and co are on their way to Hogwarts. The return Jacobite train from Fort William to Mallig follows this route. We booked the first class “Harry Potter experience” which means you have your own private compartment. We spent a good hour playing the “Bertie Botts Every Flavour Bean Challenge” which we have played before and I yet again ended up with the disgusting “Vomit” flavour sweet. We ended our holiday with two nights in Sterling and spent a day at the amazing Edinburgh Zoo that is only 50 minutes’ drive away. A real highlight was seeing a Giant Panda (I explained how unlikely this was to the boys and referenced the old KitKat advert), it really was amazing! On the way home we made a quick stop to see the Falkirk Wheel. I am clearly not an engineer, but it really is something to see. We really were so blessed on this holiday as there were two boats ready to be transported so we got to see the wheel in operation. It would have been nice to have had more time at the park as there is an excellent playground, lovely walks and boats to hire (not to take on the Wheel though!) We then finished the holiday by having a coffee and ice cream at the Kelpies. Truly majestic and next time I want to go on an evening and see them lit up! I must be honest and say that this holiday is something my husband has wanted to do for years and I have always pushed it back. Having done it, I am now wondering what we can do next year! We have all had such a memorable time, fabulous food, breath taking scenery and memories to last a life time! I could write so much more so please get in touch if you would like any more information.

Are you a fan of "Death in Paradise"?

09 August 2018

Guadeloupe, where most of the Death in Paradise series is filmed, is an amazing Caribbean Island. I have recently worked on an enquiry for a big fan of the programme, but Guadeloupe has something for everyone, whether you love the show or not. It truly offers a fabulous holiday experience. From snorkelling and diving in the breath-taking Jacques Cousteau Marine Reserve, to rum tasting, exploring Banana Plantations, hiking and trekking by the majestic La Soufrière volcano, visiting the Carbet Falls (Les Chutes du Carbet), and island hopping. These are just a few of the array of activities on offer. Not to mention the beautiful beaches! Spending a few hours wondering around the food market in Basse-Terre is well recommended, you might even be taught how the make their famous recipe of Chicken Columbo! Bars and restaurants are plentiful, and the island is very easy to drive around so car hire is recommended. It is French owned and is part of the EU so if you want to stay connected you can still use your normal mobile without incurring extra charges!

My customer stories

Sent by Melanie Toothill

Gemma has been brilliant in finding me a holiday.. she has fantastic customer service and communication. I would definitely recommend and use her services again

Sent by Sandra Balmforth

Gemma went above and beyond for all of us, as we went from one resort to another. Excellent service, nothing was too much trouble for Gemma, extreme patience with us demanding ladies. Highly recommended by all of us. Thank you xx

Sent by Kirstie Northall

I would absolutely recommend Gemma to friends and family! She was integral to our holiday choice and went out of her way to make the booking as smooth as possible. Gemma has been attentive and her communication is excellent, making sure our every need is covered. In the challenging times faced by the travel industry because of covid, Gemma is a reassuring face!

Sent by Katie Hargreaves

Gemma is very friendly, helpful and knowledgeable. What I like about her most is that she is honest. She will tell you, based on what you are looking for/wanting, what is right for you and what isn’t. I appreciate honestly and recommendations (or not) especially when booking big expensive holidays. Would highly recommend Gemma for any holiday but especially one that you want to be just right.

Sent by Linda Hirst

Gemma was great, fab and very helpful! Thank you. Enjoying following your cruise research trip on your page. Can't wait for our cruise!

Sent by Claire Picton

Gemma was really helpful as always, very friendly and Knowledgeable about the destination. Always there at the end of a message to answer any queries.

Sent by Ryan Mason

Really friendly and very helpful in wanting to know what I was wanting from my holiday and gives great advice

Sent by Sarh Taylor - Williams

Gemma has been extremely helpful. She has not only taken the responsibility of ensuring our holiday is booked properly and safely, but has also shared her wealth of knowledge and provided many ideas of how to make it more special. I won’t use anyone again other than Gemma to book a holiday in the future.

Sent by Les Lewthwaite

Great service provided by Gemma. Already recommended to my daughter. Will continue to use and recommend

Sent by Matthew Kent

Gemma has bee fantastic in helping to book several family holidays for us, listening to our requirements ad being able to suggest and organise options which we would never have been able to find ourselves. We plan to continue booking our holidays via Gemma and have already recommended her to several friends and family.

Sent by Sallyanne Hazzard

Absolutely dedicated and passionate about helping, planning, booking our breaks x

Sent by Denise Wlilson

Gemma is friendly and approachable. She always gets back to you very quickly and has a very positive attitude. She was recommended to me and I have recommended her several times. She has gained an excellent reputation in our local area.

Sent by Beverley Duncan

Gemma was an absolute god send the customer service and professional advice and approach was superb. We have also booked our next trip with Gemma a huge thank you!!

Sent by Maggie Brown

This is the first time we have booked with Gemma and she has found us our perfect family holiday. A lovely helpful lady. I know if I have any questions Gemma is there on the other end off the phone. Thankyou so much I would highly recommend Gemma!

Sent by Debbie Anderson

Gemma is super helpful and, now we’ve been working together for a while, provides that essential peace of mind that all the boxes that suit my needs have been ticked

Sent by Victoria Mowbray

Gemma was extremely professional & helpful and listened to exactly what we wanted & responded very quickly. I would have no hesitation in recommending Gemma to family & friends.

Sent by Steve Kilburn

Gemma has been fabulous throughout booking our holiday. Very knowledgeable and great to deal with. Would definitely recommend to anyone.

Sent by Richard Smith

Gemma has been first class during the booking process. Due to how the world is at the moment we have been in communication for over a year and her service has always been exemplary.

Sent by Barbara Boulton

I would like to say a massive thank you to you Gemma. From the moment I booked the trip you have kept in touch throughout, especially impressive given the changing restrictions. I have never had such good service, it has been exceptional. I will definitely book with you again and have already recommended you to family and friends. I love all the holidays you put on Facebook and will keep watching them.

Sent by Elizabeth Hirst

Excellent knowledge and advice given prior to booking our holiday. Lots of different holiday options provided before finding the perfect holiday.

Sent by Gavin McLeod

Gemma has been fantastic through out. Even though we kept tweaking things she stayed patient and very helpful!

Sent by Susan Smith

Gemma is great to work with in finding the trip that you want. She is patient and cares that you are happy with your choice. I would recommend Gemma for all occasions.

Sent by Ruth Harris

Having Gemma as our Travel Counsellor has been fantastic, it’s like a having a personal shopper. You just tell her what would like and she comes back with some options. It’s so easy! she keeps you up to date with changes and makes sure you have everything you need. Basically you just have to turn up for the holiday. Brilliant service.

Sent by Charles Knapman

Gemma is amazing. I've not booked through an agent before having had some very costly quotes in the past but Gemma found exactly what we wanted, cheaper than we had found it and made the booking process so easy!

Sent by Andrew Toothill

Gemma was brilliant - Extremely patient ... nothing was too much trouble despite us having about 6 different drafts. Thanks Gemma you are a star

Sent by Dorothy Armitage

Booked our fantastic holiday with Gemma and she was amazing from start to finish, even when she was on her own holidays. Gemma listened to exactly what my requirements were and matched them and more. As this was my first holiday with the covid restrictions in place, Gemma was extremely helpful in not only emailing me but also talking me through the tests and documents required. I have recommended her to others and would have no hesitation to use Gemma again, thank you again.

Sent by Lucy Buckley

This isn’t the first time I have used Gemma’s services and she was amazing last time. This year however with the challenges of Covid she has been invaluable!! My first original holiday was still on the red list so she rearranged, we then all got Covid so she had to rearrange again. She is always so helpful and understanding. 100% recommend and will be using again!! We had a fab holiday and can’t wait to go away again next year.

Sent by Nicola Hagar

Gemma was absolutely fantastic from before the start…. Offering advice & her expertise in the thick of the pandemic & uncertainty over travel. She had endless patience to find the perfect holiday to Tenerife for myself, my partner & my two boys. She provided regular updates & checked in in the months after booking right up to departing & even beyond that. She was always a call, email or message away and promptly responded to any queries/ questions or concerns (of which I had lots along the way!!). After booking, she looked further at so many alternative options to best suit our personal circumstances and advised/ supported us in making the most suitable choice. Gemma really went the extra mile to make sure we were happy and confident with all the travel requirements (testing/ forms/ airline requirements etc) and her care and passion for what she does shone. I cannot thank Gemma enough for EVERYTHING!!! I would definitely recommend her to others & will be booking with her again in the future.

Sent by Deborah Breckon

Gemma has been fab helping us find a fantastic family holiday that not only means luxury for the adults but also keeping a teenager happy... no small challenge! it feels like we have travelled the world together looking at options, but no matter how many times criteria changed she always and up with great suitable options. would defo recommend booking with gemma

Sent by Jayne Crampton

Gemma is so friendly, professional, understanding and supportive which is especially needed at this difficult time I would highly recommend her

Sent by Martin Oldham

I would like to thank Matthew for recommending Gemma to us to book our holiday. Gemma worked endlessly to find us the right deal, as picky as we are she kept going. Her help ensuring we had all the covid test kits was exceptional. Had it not been for her we would probably still be stuck in Greece trying to get our heads round how to test and get back. Amazing service, we will be booking again and definitely with Gemma.

Sent by Vanessa Dodd

Disappointed that we are moving our holiday in September to next year. However, because we booked through Gemma at travel counsellors it was so easy. One call to Gemma and she went into action. Flights and accommodation moved to a new date within 45 minutes. Total piece of mind booking with TC. Can’t speak highly enough of Gemma. If your looking to book your next holiday give her a call!

Sent by Janie Lambeth

I could write paragraphs about Gemma’s knowledge, skill, compassion, support and professionalism but instead I am just going to say the service I have received during the rollercoaster of the last 18 months has been quite simply the best service I have received from anyone, anywhere, ever. Gemma, you nailed it even when it looked like you would not earn anything for your hard work. As the travel industry picks up again you deserve every bit of success you will undoubtedly achieve. Thank you, we will without doubt be back for more!

Sent by Abigail Stahelin-Hall

Gemma is so friendly and very, very knowledgeable. I received a very prompt response and our quote was given to us a few days ahead of the suggested time frame. Not only that, but Gemma found us an incredibly good price for a family trip of a lifetime. I have always recommended Gemma to family, friends and the wider community and I will definitely continue to do so.

Sent by Adam Hepton

You’ve been absolutely brilliant Gemma, with great knowledge of the ever confusing Covid rules.

Sent by Jody Sykes

Absolutely incredible service. I cannot thank Gemma enough for what she has done for us to enable our holiday to go ahead. To anyone wanting to book a holiday then I cannot recommend Gemma enough. We will definitely be using Gemma again.

Sent by Janet Bebb

I can highly recommend Gemma for your holiday or experience. Gemma is professional, accommodating and has a wealth of knowledge about the travel industry. Nothing was too much trouble - as all! I'm sure I've been a pain in the a*&e with my bookings and changes but never once has Gemma made me feel like it was an inconvenience to change our bookings. Honestly, if you want a holiday to shake off the blues, Gemma Favager is the person to speak with - do it now!

Sent by Neil Grimshaw

Dear Gemma, I’ve just returned from week in Northumberland in a delightful cottage that was booked through you. Not being very motivated about the prospect of holidaying in the UK, it was a relief to hand over the responsibility of the search to Gemma. She returned with a few options and all of them were great. We booked and went to the North for our half term break. The cottage was immaculate, incredibly well kitted out, brilliantly thought through and a true home from home in the peace of the Hadrians wall country. Gemma was thorough and worked hard on our behalf up to and after booking, we felt a sense of security booking through Gemma and travel counsellors. We felt our booking was safe, we felt that if anything changed, we were protected and had Gemma on our side. We have even booked again for another break in the UK next month! I would highly recommend Gemma to my contacts and friends! Yours faithfully Neil Grimshaw

Sent by Sarak Kent

My husband and I were in panic mode this week. Trying to find somewhere suitable for a family of 5 in the 6 week holidays in the uk. Due to Covid 19 most places fully booked and as a busy mum of three and a husband who works crazy hours we didn’t have time to trawl through website after website. I messaged Gemma on Tuesday evening and by 8am on Wednesday morning had an email with several different properties, suiting our needs and budget! Summer holiday booked with ease! I then gave Gemma our requirements for May 2022 again a family holiday for 5 of us somewhere sunny and all inclusive. Again Gemma sent some through via email very quickly. These were not quite right for us so after a chat on the phone about our accommodation requirements 2 more choices popped through one of which we have consequently booked! So grateful as it looks brilliant, meets our requirements and is within our set budget. Thank you Gemma for taking all the stress of holiday hunting away and listening to what we want!

Sent by Lindsey Bedford

Cannot recommend this lady enough! She has made booking and rearranging our family holiday due to Covid stress free. 3rd Time Lucky!

Sent by Stuart Pain

Dear Gemma I just wanted to pass on a note of thanks for sorting things out with both arranging then un-arranging our holiday this year. We were very much looking forward to doing something new and touring northern Italy by rail for the first week and then an Adriatic cruise for the second to coincide with our son completing his GCSE’s and taking the opportunity to travel outside of school holidays for the first time in years. You worked with us in January to put together a bespoke itinerary and we were very disappointed we were unable to travel due to COVID-19 restrictions. As the trip had been tailor made with various separate travel and accommodation elements I anticipated that we would not get full refund. At the very least I expected us to find ourselves involved with a drawn-out insurance claim which best case scenario would involve us covering an insurance excess. However, after much effort on your part we had all payments returned by October. Thank you, that was as good an outcome as we possible could have hoped for. Fingers crossed 2021 will allow us to go on new adventures and I will have no hesitation of booking those through you and also recommending you to others looking to travel. Many thanks Stuart Pain Director

Sent by Jo Hand

Gemma has now booked various holidays for me and every experience of using her services has exceeded my expectations. She is always polite, professional, warm and friendly, and does what she says she will. However, most importantly, she actually listens to you with regards to your holiday criteria and wish list - and delivers! We had an amazing 5 star holiday in Turkey via Gemma and she had ensure every one of our boxes was ticked. She has now booked a 5 star break to Monaco and is looking for a holiday to the USA for us now to watch the Ryder Cup. From now on I will put all my / our holidays in Gemma's safe hands. She is simply the best, better than all the rest...

Sent by Damian Sayers

Dear Gemma, I would just like to write you a quick thank you, even though we have not yet been able to travel. Whilst we were in the depths of lockdown, my daughter and I played the game “when this is all over, I want to ……” to which I said, “I want to go to Disney”. Booking was easy and painless, apart from being a Yorkshireman and having to part with my well-earned money. Simple right? Oh no. Like I said we have not travelled. We made our way down south in Bambi - our amazing Bedford Campervan (my wife certainly did not write this testimonial, at all) and stopped off at my fathers-in-law’s, for a short break before crossing the channel. In retrospect, we should have continued to the end of the A3 and got straight on the ferry that evening, because the next morning, we woke up to the news that France was on the Quarantine list and the FCO were advising essential travel only. It was your text that alerted us to this and whilst my wife and I had sessions to deliver for work (stressing out secretly in the back of our minds) you were working away, on the phone to Disney, rearranging our dates; managing to secure them for Christmas at no extra cost. There are doubts now whether we will be able to actually travel then, but we have full confidence that if again the worst-case scenario does happen, we have you on our side, helping us out. So, thank you. If it were not for you, we would never have got round to booking it, and we’d have been completely ****ed if it wasn’t for you.The hardest thing we have had to do in this whole process, is keep it all secret from the little one Thanks again Gemma, I would have no doubt or hesitation in recommending you, you have been a godsend. And to end on a Disney quote - Even miracles take time

Sent by Stuart Moore

Yesterday, I was discussing with my daughter the situation she found herself in at the time of lockdown. Stuck in Egypt. Gemma at this stressful time, tried to help arrange or find alternative flights. Ellie outlayed £2000 through her resourcefulness in booking 3 flights to get her home via Lithuania, and Belgium. She was prevented from her travels due to her nationality. We had booked our own holiday through Gemma . We felt very concerned about traveling abroad and still do. Gemma reassured us and was able to refund us our payment, unlike my daughter who had booked through last minute.com and still struggles for reimbursement. I will definitely book our next holidays though Gemma, thank you for all your help.

Sent by Deborah Breckon

Gemma has been fab helping us find a fantastic family holiday that not only means luxury for the adults but also keeping a teenager happy... no small challenge! it feels like we have travelled the world together looking at options, but no matter how many times criteria changed she always came up with great suitable options. would defo recommend booking with gemma

Sent by Sophie Bebb

Dear Gemma, I asked you to help me plan the trip of a lifetime to Iceland as a surprise for my Mum's big birthday. Gemma, you went above and beyond the call of duty, offering multiple options for activities at excursions, and making the whole process of booking the trip as easy as possible. You even organised for a mini tour guide to be put together to gift to my Mum on her birthday. My mum was overjoyed with the trip, and all the added extras included! Thank you Gemma for making the whole process stress-free. Gemma would be my first thought whenever I go to book a trip in the future - her level of customer service is second to none, and worth every penny. Thank you Gemma. Yours sincerely, Sophie Bebb

Sent by Stewart Marshall

After months of putting it off , I eventually contacted Gemma with a view to her booking some flights to Australia for me to visit my son. I gave her some details and she came back with a couple of options , extremely competitive and efficient , from there on she booked the flights for me , checked in and got me great seats on the flight. Whilst away , the COVOD 19 thing reared its head and after a while my family in the UK became slightly worried (much to my surprise !) I contacted Gemma on a Sunday night and she came straight back to me and kept in constant touch until my return. Simply superb service , I used her again last week to book a UK weekend away in October , once more numerous options exactly what I was looking for. I would have absolutely no hesitation in recommending Gemma to all friend and family and will be using from now on in Thanks Gemma Stewart x

Sent by Jessica Rushforth

Gemma is an absolute gem! From start to finish she was great, We had a horrible experience with a recent holiday and regardless of the time and the fact she was actually on her own holiday, Gemma gave up the time to talk us through what we needed to do. She spent so much of her own time on the phone with me and the holiday company who we booked with, through Gemma. She was a comfort to have at the other end of the phone and fight our corner of a nightmare holiday. We couldn’t have asked for a better person to be on our side and take the time to understand what we were going through. Thank you Jess Rushforth

Sent by Max Lambert

In January this year as I am not a “Party Animal” and I would be celebrating my 80th birthday in March I decided to remove an item from my bucket list and spend it in New York my first visit to America. I spoke to Gemma, who within 72 hours had found 3 hotels which she recommended close to Times Square and Flights from Manchester to JFK. She also suggested a number of activities, sightseeing and tours so that we wouldn’t need to worry about booking them when we arrived as that would take up valuable time. After brief discussions we settled on a Hotel which was very good which unusually provided breakfast and evening meals within the price .We upgraded our flights with Virgin Atlantic to Premium Economy excellent value. Transfers, activities were all arranged to leave us time to explore New York during the last 3 days of our stay. Everything we expected was delivered and both before and during our stay she kept in touch to make sure there were no problems arising which there weren’t. I have no hesitation in recommending Gemma to all of you

Sent by Julie Whale

Gemma is an excellent Travel Counsellor and I have recommended already she is a joy to have as my travel expert.

Sent by Charles Coombes

Gemma's service was second to none. She was very knowledgeable, professional and personable. I will not hesitate to recommend her to my family, friends, colleagues and acquaintances.

Sent by Damian Gomersall

We have used Gemma’s services on a few occasions when deciding on and planning holidays. She always listens to what we want and is really helpful in doing all the research for us and filling in the gaps. The recommendations she comes up with pretty much trump our original plans and come in at budget too. She’s planned holidays for us in the past, including travelling America with a toddler, and she has just booked our most recently holiday coming up in May. She is always available to chat and meet any needs we have, and if we’ve run into any problems while we are away, she goes out of her way to sort them out from her end and takes away any stress we might have. Gemma is great at her job, she’s knowledgable and extremely professional. And whenever I’ve done a bit of research about hotels or holiday destinations, she usually knows about the hotels and destinations I’ve already looked at and can give me much more feedback and detail about them. (More than TripAdvisor!) We always contact Gemma before we book anything now. Thanks.

Sent by Sally Marshall

I have given Gemma this score because she has always provided a great services with added extra so I would definitely recommend her to family and friends.

Sent by Victoria Anderson

As always fabulous service and also incredibly patient! looking forward to a holiday I know will be amazing and everything taken care of! :)

Sent by Simon Edmundson

I found Gemma to be very approachable, knowledgeable and very experienced to get the right holiday booked. Gemma answered all the questions, using relatable examples. She was quick and her service was excellent.

Sent by Deborah Traviss

Great experience. It has been a very easy holiday booking friendly, good advice. When Gemma said she would do something she did ..very efficient thank you

Sent by Hannah Wright

Gemma is so knowledgeable and gives you various options without influencing you on options. She's friendly and professional at the same time and I felt very well looked after throughout the whole process - I already have recommended her and will continue to do so!!

Sent by Roger Swithenbank

First class service, excellent knowledge and attention to detail, highly recommended. Thank you.

Sent by Ryan Virtue

Gemma is an excellent point of contact for all our travel requirements, and will happily listen to your thoughts and come back with great options.

Sent by Clair Wood

Gemma is fantastic, very helpful and patient with my never ending questions. Thank you xx

Sent by Vanessa Dodd

Gemma was fantastic. She very quickly got to grips with our requirements and provided us with a number of options to help us create our bespoke family holiday. She was readily available and even though it was a weekend she found time to make adjustments to our booking. Within 4 days of starting the planning process we had a 4 location dream holiday booked and paid for. Exceptional service and I would and have already recommended Gemma.

Sent by Samantha MacDonald

Just returned from a long weekend in Lisbon that Gemma organised for us. Her knowledge, advice, opinions & support before, during & after our holiday was exceptional. Everything Gemma organised & booked for us was perfect. I would definitely recommend booking any holiday through Gemma & also recommend a weekend away in Lisbon. Gemma is so friendly & her customer service is outstanding. Thank you so much for a perfect childfree weekend.

Sent by Joanne Walsh

Gemma was extreamly helpfull and i have and will continue to recommend her to my friends and family. Gemma did a fantastic job of finding me my upcoming holiday, and i am greatfull for all the information i received and all the hard work it took for Gemma to do so. Thank you again, i will definitely be using your service in the future.

Sent by Susan Smith

Gemma has been a pleasure to work with in getting this perfect holiday. She has gone above and beyond in helping with some questions. Thank you. Whilst we knew it was going to cost us money we were happy with everything.

Sent by Jan Preston

Fabulous service! I’m hooked

Sent by Mark Sanderson

Excellent service, Gemma made booking a holiday so easy we will be definitely using her again.....

Sent by Raymond Bissett

Gemma delivered an efficient, effective and timely service, resulting in a positive outcome.

Sent by Samatha MacDonald

I don’t think I’d go anywhere else now to book a holiday & would definitely recommend Gemma to anyone that is looking for a holiday! All my expectations were exceeded, the quotes were detailed & bespoke. Gemma was extremely helpful, personal & is very quick at replying. She is clearly knowledgable in travel, is so friendly & just lovely really. Thank you Gemma, we can’t wait to go away xx

Sent by Ian Wilkinson

Dear Gemma, Having now returned from our family multi centre trip to the USA I would just like to say how smooth the organisation and support was. Four Hotels, Seven excursions, 10 private transfers and Nine flights in all. No one was late – all on time and even the road transfer back to LA pulled out all the stops to get around a hideous traffic problem and still deliver us in plenty of time The App on the phone was great, the automatic reminders helpful, all backed up with a full set of printed documentation in a handy quality wallet. Your prior advice beforehand was spot on. All contact numbers were spot on when we needed to call to reconfirm/clarify etc The only slight frustration – nothing to do with Travel Counsellors was the British airways online check in – no surprises there Excellent trip and I would thoroughly recommend you and TC to colleagues and friends Thanks Again Ian Wilkinson

Sent by Montserrat Ametller Batlle

Gemma was really helpful with all the information and advice she gave us before we decided to book our holidays. She's also been so patient with all our questions, giving us so many options (hotels, flights, dates, destinations...) and looking for the best offers. I can't recommend her enough.

Sent by Stuart Moore

I wish to formally compliment you on the service you recently provided to us, for a week’s break at short notice to the lake district. You were able to find luxurious accommodation for ourselves and a teenager, who was equally satisfied with the access to Wi-Fi. Not only was the price great but the facilities were perfect. I was very impressed, by the swiftness and complete professionalism offered by yourself once we had decided, we had flitted between a staycation or a holiday abroad. We were informed by e mail of our holiday and was contacted during and afterwards. This made us feel more than just a holiday maker but valued for our custom. I would use your services again and I would not hesitate in recommending your services.

Sent by Amy Hardi

Gemma is an absolute pleasure to deal with. Nothing is too much trouble, i was kept full up to date and also given different options. I will definitely be booking with Gemma again and recommending her to everyone

Sent by Kathy Brown

I've now mentioned Gemma to my friends who are thinking of booking holidays...brilliant lady highly recommended!!

Sent by Michelle Hewitt

Gemma was friendly, efficient and patient. Nothing was too much trouble. Would happily recommend to others.

Sent by Gemma Foster

We’re home now after having such a lovely time, it was just what we needed as a family and hope we can do it again next year. Can’t thank Gemma Favager enough for all her help throughout the whole process of searching and booking right up to her lovely gifts for the kids before we left, organising all our check in and boarding passes, being at the other end of the phone throughout the holiday, checking in with us that everything was ok, and all the small personal touches including a welcome home card on our doorstep. We will DEFINITELY be booking our next holiday through her again and would recommend her to all our friends too!! Massive thank you Gemma xxx

Sent by Jody Sykes

Thank you, thank you, thank you! I have just booked a villa for 15 people next year through Gemma. Right from the outset, Gemma was excellent with my demands / requirements and was so enthusiastic to help finding us the perfect place. I cannot recommend Gemma enough for anyone wanting to book a holiday!

Sent by Lisa Darwin

Fantastic customer service, I would recommend Gemma Favager to my friends, family and colleagues. The personal touch is so reassuring, I was made to feel extremely well looked after, Gemma understands me and my families needs for our holiday! I will certainly be booking my next holiday with Gemma.

Sent by Gavin McLeod

Gemma was fantastic and extremely helpful. We kept changing and tweaking things and she was always willing to look into things.

Sent by Julia Owen-Smith

Gemma was wonderful. Nothing was to much of a problem and she was supportive every step of the way. Rarely do you receive such outstanding service and I will definitely continue to recommend her to family and friends. Thank you for everything.

Sent by John Burnett

Dear Gemma I recently attended a family wedding in Sorrento. I am aware that some people enjoy the process, however the thought of spending hours on the internet sourcing flights and accommodation fills me with dread. Luckily, I didn’t have to. I gave you my requirements and within a couple of hours everything was sorted. From booking the flights and accommodation to coming home, the whole process was seamless. I have already booked another break with you and I am hoping that I never have to organise another holiday ever again. The service you provided was second to none and I will happily recommend you to friends, family, colleagues and clients. Many thanks once again. Yours sincerely John Burnett

Sent by Hannah Bairstow

Gemma was absolutely fantastic from start to finish. She listened to all my wants and needs and was extremely patient when I changed my mind a few times. Nothing was too difficult or a pain. I find going on holiday quite stressful but she made the whole process feel relaxed, by checking us in in advance and sending me everything we needed. She even gave me quick text whilst I was away to check everything was ok, and I came home to a lovely card wishing me a welcome home. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend her for anyone wanting to book a holiday, I will definitely be going through her in the future and recommend her to friends and family. Many Thanks Hannah Bairstow

Sent by Dave Godley

Really impressed by the help and assistance we received from Gemma in setting up our trip to the USA. Very efficient and quick to respond to our requests and wishes. Would not hesitate in recommending Gemma to anyone!

Sent by Rowena Wilde

Great service, no hassle and no pressure! Thank you Gemma

Sent by Lindsey Newell

We’ve recently booked a family trip to Lapland with Gemma and would highly recommend her to anyone. Gemma was very informative, provided different options to choose from based on our requirements and budget and it was clear throughout that Gemma had a genuine desire to ensure we found the perfect package for our family. Communication from the initial enquiry to the quotation, through to the booking stage was exceptional! Highly recommended 5 star service!

Sent by Judith Pearce

We have booked our Silver Wedding trip of a lifetime to America visiting New York, Nashville, San Francisco and Monterey. We had the expert help of Gemma Favager - Travel Counsellors. Gemma was very patient, knowledgable and made it all so easy for us. We would recommend her to all our family & friends.

Sent by Caroline Tattersley

Gemma has been so helpful in arranging a trip to New York and would highly recommend her! The deal she has got us is amazing! Great communication and knowledge! Thankyou :)

Sent by Barinda Dhesi

I’ve already recommended Gemma to a friend. Gemma is so very helpful and friendly. She completely understands what your wants are and always tries her hardest to get you exactly what you asked for. I would hesitate recommending anyone to her and she is my go to when looking to plan our next family holiday.

Sent by Hannah Bairstow

Gemma was fantastic! So helpful throughout the whole process!

Sent by Chanel Wilson

Gemma has been fantastic with booking our holiday, she made it so easy and took care of everything, I will definitely be using her again.

Sent by Gini Wilde

Gemma took my brief and found us a few options to choose from all within budget. I will definitely be using Gemma's service's again and have already recommended her to a few contacts. Thank you Gemma

Sent by Rowena Bradford

Gemma was extremely helpful in getting the holiday I wanted for the best price. She was and continues to be very supportive, I would highly recommend her to friends & family

Sent by Catherine Blackwell

Gemma organised us a magical 1st anniversary trip to Akureyri, Iceland. Her service was phenomenal, from walking us through all the different options to a blizzard arriving and our excursions needed to be juggled to suit the weather conditions she was on hand to reassure and support us. 100% personal service, can’t wait to book again!

Sent by Bernadette Boryslawskyj

Gemma has been most helpful, ringing companies for me and keeping me up to date all the time . Much appreciated!!

Sent by Lucy Armitage

First time I’ve used this type of service and Gemma has made it pain free! I was worried that I was being too picky and I am hopeless at making a decision, but she was very supportive and reassuring and we are now looking forward to our summer holiday.

Sent by Sandra Balmforth

Very friendly service, nothing was too much trouble, sorted all the problems out for us when booking our holiday. Everything is sorted out for you from start of your holiday to the finish. Would definitely recommend Gemma to all our friends and family. First class service. 10/10

Sent by Mandy Walsh

Gemma made it so easy and took the pressure of booking flights and a holiday. Cannot recommend Gemma enough thank you.

Sent by Kayla Takvam

This lady was with us through every step of our holiday and being first timers it was very nerve racking! Even when things happened that were out of our control... Gemma stepped in and sorted it for us! It felt comforting know that Gemma was there all the time and genuinely caring about us! We would recommend this lady! Thank you Gemma.

Sent by Josh Hume

Gemma has made the whole process so easy. We're not familiar with the destination so it's extremely reassuring to have an expert helping us all the way through.

Sent by Emma Wood

Gemma is fantastic she booked our trip to the Abu Dhabi GP. It was amazing. Nothing was too much trouble, I must have asked for about 5 different options for the trip from extended the day, upgrades, flights, different hotels, seats and all where done quickly, efficiently with no problems and very knowledgeable. She was on hand once it was booked offering advice on meals out, transport etc, answering questions. During the holiday and afterwards if needed. It was faultless. Will definitely be booking through Gemma again, just wish we discovered you before booking next years holiday. I will get more pictures over of the trip too!

Sent by Amy Bissett

Thank you Gemma for sorting our Christmas New York trip at such last minute and coming to the rescue, everything was perfect. After being let down by another travel company, I thought I'd have to trawl the internet for hours to find another holiday asap which filled me with dread, but a quick phone call and you came back really quick and made it all so easy, you're like a holiday fairy! The TC app is really useful to use too. Roll on next year's holiday that we've also booked with you!

Sent by Carly Turnbull

Gemma has taken the stress and hassle out of booking a holiday. She has sources a complete range of activities for me and my family. She has called twice since the booking to ensure I have all I need. I would highly recommend Gemma to my friends and family. We are already planning our next holiday away. Thank you

Sent by Clair Wood

Thank you Gemma for making our Lapland dreams come true. You have the patience of a saint. Who knew not only do you need to be a travel expert but also a weather forecaster! Thank you so much for all your help and advice and sorting every detail for us. Highly recommend Gemma for all you travel plans. She’s been invaluable.

Sent by Rachael Senior

Just back from a fantastic few days away in Lisbon - all expertly arranged by Gemma! From the overnight stay in Manchester, flights, hotel in Lisbon and everything in between, our short break was perfect. The Miraparque hotel was in a great location to explore the city and visit places of interest, bars, cafes and restaurants. Thank you Gemma for all your hard work in making sure we had a great trip. We had nothing to do but turn up and enjoy our holiday. Certainly a trip to remember - thank you for all your help xxx

Sent by Yvonne Waft

Gemma booked us a great short break in Krakow recently. Very efficient and friendly service. Sorted out accessibility needs out very satisfactorily!

Sent by Deborah Anderson

Gemma takes all the stress out of arranging my holidays and I always recommend her to friends who express an interest in my holiday destinations.

Sent by Robert Waft

An excellent 'no effort' holiday booking outfit. Our holiday needs are quite specific, with some complications, and Gemma sorted it without fuss.

Sent by Beverly Drury

Highly recommended - well organised and efficient service - excellent communication and customer service.

Sent by Anne-Marie Pepper

I have booked a holiday today with Gemma. She is fantastic and I couldn't recommend her enough. She listens to what you want for your holiday and finds the best prices to suit your budget. Lovely to talk to and very helpful. Thanks Gemma

Sent by Samantha Predergast

I am so very impressed with the service given by Gemma. I'm a bit of a holiday snob and Gemma did everything she could to get me the best holiday that matched my requirements. I will absolutely be booking again with Gemma in the future

Sent by Julia Owen-Smith

Fabulous service from the first email - taken all the hassle out of planning a holiday barr the packing! Thank you Gemma, you have been amazing, nothing has been too much trouble.

Sent by Diane Field

Gemma has been fantastic. Found us exactly what we were looking for. Would definitely use Gemma in the future.

Sent by Lucy Dickson

Gemma was lovely to deal with, extremely helpful and knowledgable about the destination. She provided recommendations on eating plans and offered to pre book restaurants for us to make sure we get the full Disney experience.

Sent by Tori Anderson

Gemma was so patient in taking the time to discuss holiday options, and she really made sure that she supported me in making the right decision for what I wanted in a holiday. Starting from a place of knowing you want to go on holiday, but not really sure where you want to go, is not an easy task. I cant wait to go on holiday, and have recommended Gemma to loads of friends and family already! She's informed, detailed, enthusiastic, honest (if she doesn't know something, she will go find out and come back to you), organised, provides great communication and full of fantastic hints and tips - what more could you want from someone to help you in booking a holiday!!

Sent by Sally-Anne Dixon

We are currently feeling the most relaxed/rested we've been for a good while, all thanks to the amazing 5 star service delivered through Gemma Favager. From the minute I got in touch about our much anticipated time away, Gemma has been nothing but a delight to work with. From booking extras, printing all tickets/boarding passes (delivered by hand along with a little present to help count take us down) to the little (and large) extras of a thoughtful welcome note, to the fact she's managed to get both couples in our party a room upgrade to a private pool. I can't recommend her enough.Thank you Gemma, it's just perfect. #luckylady #feelingspecial #5starcustomerservice"

Sent by Christina Brown

Gemma was very helpful and patient . She has accommodated everyones needs and I would definitely use her again for future holidays.

Sent by Janice Wakefield

Wonderful friendly very helpful service, would definitely contact when planning time away again, thank you very much .

Sent by Simone Newton

Brilliant, was fantastic finding us a holiday while we were limited to school hols and a limited budget. Would highly recommend her.

Sent by Kayla Takvam

Thank you Gemma for all your help! Whilst we are looking forward to our fabulous cruise, there has (and still is) a steady build up of nerves. You have taken the time to listen to what we wanted, no pushy approach with total empathy on how we are feeling! First time my partner is setting foot outside the UK and you haven’t complained yet on how may times I have asked for detail ( and we still have months to go!)

Sent by Sandra Balmforth

Really excited to book our holiday. Gemma was so patient, spent time going from one cruise company to another. Took us ages to decide, but got there in the end. Thank you!

Sent by Sheila Goodwill

Gemma has shown incredible patience during the prolonged discussions to plan our forthcoming holiday. I have already recommended her to two friends!

Sent by Jennifer Clifford

Just returned from a very special and memorable family holiday in Italy. Gemma organised everything seamlessly and all the extra little thoughts were perfect. Cannot recommend highly enough and can’t wait to book our next trip through Gemma again!

Sent by Ann Sweeney

The whole process was so professional and stress free. I am not used to booking holidays and flights and with Gemma's knowledge, and experience it made it so easy. I wouldn't do it any other way. It was such a personal experience and Gemma is continuing to support me, she is on hand to answer any further questions I have. I have already recommended Gemma to my work colleagues.

Sent by Anne Warrington

I was a nightmare customer just changing my mind and changing the search and the service I received never faulted!

Sent by Rebecca Shaw

What a relaxing yet professional holiday booking! Wonderful having a true professional who loves their job taking care of our holiday. Nothing but complete trust put in Gemma from start to finish and truly looked after! I will definitely will book any further holidays this way with Gemma to take off the pressure of me searching, knowing we will get exactly what we want.