easyJet holidays adds Tunisia to Gatwick schedule for summer 2020

easyJet holidays has recently announced the launch of holidays to Tunisia from London Gatwick for summer 2020.

As part of the programme, customers will have the choice of a Wednesday or Saturday flight to Tunisia each week from London Gatwick. Holidays to the new destination are on sale with the first departures scheduled from May 2020.

Paul Bixby, Strategy and Sourcing Director, easyJet holidays commented: ‘Tunisia is an incredibly popular place to enjoy a holiday and it’s great news to be able to add it as a choice for this summer. It offers amazing beaches, beautiful hotels, and all at brilliant value. All of our holidays to Tunisia that we’ve launched today are all inclusive, and for all of our holidays we include 23kg of luggage per person as standard as well as transfers on our beach holidays.’

As part of the holiday package, eight directly contracted hotels in Tunisia are on sale with easyJet holidays. The hotels on offer include the 4 Star One Resort Aqua Park and Spa suited for a family retreat on a private stretch of Skanes’ El Mouradi beach and 5 star Iberostar Selection Diar El Andalous, a contemporary hotel on the beachfront in Sousse complete with spa and a range of a la carte dining options. easyJet will expand the Tunisia range and add more hotels to give customers more choice.

The new holidays to Tunisia through easyJet holidays are all inclusive and some include free child places, offering customers an affordable summer holiday. easyJet holiday is available to book at www.easyjet.com/en/holidays.

TUI UK launches new services for summer 2020 from Bristol Airport

TUI UK, the UK-based travel and holiday company, has earlier this month announced a new destination to Enfidha (Tunisia) and one additional flight to Reus (Spain), offering more choice and flexibility to holidaymakers for summer 2020 from Bristol Airport.

The first TUI flight from Bristol to Enfidha will depart on May 4, 2020 and operates once a week on Monday. For Reus, the first additional flight takes-off on May 26, 2020 departing on Tuesday, with the other flight on Saturday. With the new services, holidaymakers now have over 17,000 additional seats to choose from to over 35 destinations when booking their summer holiday from Bristol Airport.

TUI UK&I’s Director of Aviation Planning, Karen Switzer, said: ‘We are very excited to launch our summer 2020 holiday programme. We are concentrating on providing more availability to our great range of holidays by expanding our regional flying programme.

‘The new route to Enfidha and the additional flight to Reus from Bristol provides holidaymakers with more opportunity including the flexibility of different durations to experience our wide range of hotel concepts and destinations.’

Nigel Scott, Business Development Director at Bristol Airport, said: ‘We are delighted that our summer 2020 holidays are now on sale with a new route to Enfidha and an extra flight to Reus for summer 2020. We recognise TUI’s continued commitment to Bristol with the Boeing 787 Dreamliner being based here throughout summer 2020 providing daily flights to a mix of short and long haul destinations including Orlando, Cancun, Majorca and Turkey.’

In Tunisia, holidaymakers can enjoy, among other things, the sandy beaches and spices bazaars. The 4T+ TUI SENISMAR Scheherazade is an adults-only resorts, while the 5Sun Holiday Village Manar is designed for families, offering kids’ and teens’ clubs, daytime activities and West End standard shows. In Spain, customers can choose from the 4T TUI FAMILY LIFE Avenida Suites and the 4T Estival Centurion Playa. TUI FAMILY LIFE resorts are a family orientated option, while the 4T Estival Centurion Playa is part of the TUI PLATINUM concept aimed at couples.

TUI offers seven-night holidays to Tunisia staying at the 5T TUI SENSIMAR Oceana Resort and Spa on a half board basis from £745 per person when booked online. Price is based on two adults sharing and includes flights departing from Bristol Airport on July 6, 2020 and transfers. TUI and First Choice have free kids’ places across their holidays – deposits are £50pp for short and mid haul and £125pp for long haul, it said.

Thomas Cook to re-launch flights and holidays to Tunisia

Travel and holiday company Thomas Cook has said that it will resume its holiday and flight operations to Tunisia for UK customers starting February 13.

The service will start with three weekly flights to Enfidha, from Manchester, London Gatwick and Birmingham, and will expand to include Glasgow from April and Newcastle and London Stansted from May.

The move comes after the UK government changed its advice for Tunisia allowing UK holidaymakers to travel to most parts of the country. Tunisia has been a popular destination among holidaymakers with the first three flights selling out since going on sale in August 2017.

Chris Mottershead, Managing Director at Thomas Cook UK, said: ‘Tunisia has been a popular tourist destination for decades and with our first three flights sold out, there is an appetite from our customers. Its soft, long beaches, year-round sun, historic ruins and tasty local food mean it attracts lots of loyal visitors, as well as those visiting for the first time. Tunisia is once again proving to be a popular choice for a value for money holiday.’

Under the programme, Thomas Cook Airlines is offering return flights to Tunisia from £137.98 per person. Price is based on a travel date of April 10, 2018, departing from Glasgow. Thomas Cook is offering seven nights on all-inclusive at the four-star SENTIDO Phenicia from £306 per person; price is based on a travel date of March 14, 2018, departing from London Gatwick including transfers.

With the resumption of service, holidaymakers will now be able to enjoy a range of excursions to explore Tunisia’s Roman heritage including Carthage and El Djem. Those looking for a break in Tunisia this winter can choose from 10 hotels in Hammamet resort and the new Yasmine Hammamet along the north-east coast, as well as Skanes. The hotels on offer include three of Thomas Cook’s own brand of SENTIDO hotels – SENTIDO Phenicia, SENTIDO Le Sultan and SENTIDO Aziza Beach Golf & Spa designed for single travellers, couples and small families.

For summer, the number of properties will increase to 14 and will include the resort of Mahdia, Thomas Cook said.

FCO advises travellers to avoid travel to Tunisia

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has advised travellers and holidaymakers against all but essential travel to Tunisia, according to a release by Thomson and First Choice.

Following the change in FCO travel advice, Thomson and First Choice have cancelled all outbound flights to Tunisia for the summer season, which is up to and including the October 31. The Thomson Airways flights that have been cancelled include weekly services from Gatwick to Djerba starting July 22, and Enfidha starting July 26. The holiday company has also cancelled its weekly flights to Enfidha from Manchester, starting July 26.

Thomson and First Choice said that while they have no customers currently in Tunisia, as a protective measure the company will repatriate all British Thomson and First Choice staff currently working in Tunisia immediately.

The company added that customers who were planning to travel to Tunisia this summer, up to and including October 31, will be given the opportunity to amend their holiday free of charge to any destinations currently on sale, or receive a full refund.

Thomson and First Choice are now offering additional flights from airports across the UK to destinations including the Balearic Islands, Mainland Spain and Cyprus. Customers will be able to amend free of charge, and those choosing the new flights will be offered a £50 discount per person.

Customers looking to discuss booking to Tunisia have been asked to contact the travel agent, and in case of travellers who have booked their holidays to Tunisia online customers have been asked to contact their local Thomson or First Choice store.

Stay at Star Wars film set for just £6 – HotUKDeals

Members of HotUKDeals, a UK-based online deal hunting community, have discovered a destination that can transport visitors to ‘a galaxy far, far away’ for just £6 a night.

The venue in question is the hotel used as Luke Skywalker’s Tatooine House in Star Wars: A New Hope.

Now a tourist attraction, the Hotel Sidi Driss in Matamata, Tunisia, is built out of five pit dwellings, and has been likened to an earthy silent tomb. The underground labyrinth of vaults and passageways was used as Luke Skywalker’s home for the first Stars Wars film. These ‘troglodytes’ underground homes are traditional cave dwellings built 20 feet underground to protect residents from the intense heat. The bargain priced rooms, spotted by the on-line community’s members, also include breakfast.

The underground hotel has 20 rooms for 145 guests, with a restaurant and bar. According to one HotUKDeals member, KinanswerMe, who has already visited the hotel, visitors ‘can even see Mr. Lucas’ signature on some of the set pieces’ making this a pilgrimage for every Star Wars super fan.

The other destinations and activities on offer in the area include a museum behind the hotel, the scenic stone village of Tamezret and an excursion to the tiny troglodyte village of Haddej, known for its underground olive press.

The offer has caused huge excitement in the community, with fan, Ffaruq, saying that ‘this is the most awesome deal in the history of HUKD!’

‘[As]as long as those Imperial Stormtroopers do not turn up looking for some droids, it should be a decent stay,’ says member, Wasmith67.

Another member, tehwabbit, warned: ‘It’s a danger zone FFS, why would you advise HUKD members to go here?!… full of Tuscan Raiders and weird old men, not to mention the kidnappings the Jawas frequently do.’

‘..now too convince the other half this is somehow a educational visit!’, said Marcusdawg.

With over 830,000 members, HotUKDeals identifies and shares new cut-price deals every week on a wide range of tourist attractions.

Just Sunshine Offers Direct Flights from Glasgow Airport to Tunisia

Just Sunshine, a UK based holiday company, will be offering direct flights to Tunisia from Glasgow Airport in the UK, commencing this summer.

The airline has confirmed that as part of its 2013 summer schedule, it will be offering direct flights to Tunisia for three weeks, operating out of Glasgow Airport. The airline is launching its inaugural flight on June 29, 2013, and intends to offer extended services to Tunisia from the summer of 2014.

Tony Blakey, the national sales manager at Just Sunshine, said, ‘We have been working closely with the local travel trade over the course of the past 18 months and it is clear there is demand for charter services to Tunisia from Glasgow. We’re looking forward to arriving at Glasgow Airport in June and it is our intention to expand our service in 2014. We have been operating holidays to Tunisia for over seven years and have a strong track record in providing a range of tailored packages, so we’re confident the service will prove successful.’

Francois Bourienne, the commercial director of Glasgow Airport, said, ‘Just Sunshine is a welcome addition to our busy summer schedule. Tunisia has grown in popularity with holidaymakers and the tour operator’s arrival is great news for Glasgow Airport as it will provide our customers with even greater choice.’

Just Sunshine is part of Tunisia based El Mouradi Group, which also owns the El Mouradi Hotels brand. The company is an independent tour operator from the UK to Tunisia, and offers around 120 hotels in seven resort destinations.

Enjoying Sweets Abroad

There are a number of dates throughout the year promoting variations of local, national or international Chocolate Day – as if we needed an excuse to indulge our sugar cravings! UK Chocolate Week is every October and there is even World Chocolate Day which took place on September 4th. Take a look at our guide to enjoying some of the best desserts, sweets and cakes in three of Thomas Cook’s most popular European destinations.

Turkey

Last minute Turkey holidays are perfect for those of you with a sweet tooth. Turkish delight is probably the best-known sugary snack from the Middle East. These small, fragrant cubes of jelly are usually flavoured with rosewater, orange flower water or citrus fruit juice and heavily dusted with icing sugar. Turkish delight is served alongside coffee or tea in Middle Eastern households. Cinnamon or peppermint flavoured oils are sometimes used as an alternative to rosewater.

Baklava is by far Turkey’s favourite dessert. Eggs, olives, pistachio, and lemons are some of the ingredients used in this sweet treat. The final product is a delicious syrupy pastry snack. Aside from white-sandy beaches, breathtaking cliff-bound bays and lively nightlife, holidays to Dalaman offer some of the best baklava in the country.

Malta

Holidays in Malta have always been popular, due to the island’s many sunny days, expansive beaches and vibrant nightlife. It’s also a melting pot of cultures. With North African and Arabic influences from the south, Sicilian from the north, and Greek from the west, this diversity is reflected in its cuisine. Kannoli is perhaps the most famous Italian-influenced Maltese sweet. This very popular confectionery is shaped like a cylinder and stuffed with pieces of chocolate and fruit preserves. Figoll, delicious golden-brown biscuits stuffed with ground almonds, are also a local favourite.

Tunisia

Cheap holidays in Tunisia are very popular and with good reason; behind excellent beaches and low-rise hotels lies a country of great variety – green mountains, rivers, lakes and amazing weather. Tunisian desserts reflect this variety too. The most common is a simple plate of light, sweet and delicious seasonal fruit to cleanse the palate. There are also a multitude of honey, nut and pastry shaped sweets. Makroudh is a North African favourite; it is made with honey and has a date filling on the inside. Powdered sugar doughnuts topped with pistachios are also popular here.

Reopening of The Bardo National Museum proves to be breathing life into Tunis tourism

The Bardo National Museum (Le Musee National du Bardo), which boasts the world’s largest collection of Roman mosaics, is enjoying roaring success after reopening its doors to the public in July this year.

The project, which cost over 19 million dinar (around $16k), and created over 9,000 sq m or new space in the once-dilapidated museum, has brought a new lease of life to tourism in the capital.

The redevelopment and space creation has meant that the Bardo now has the capacity to accept one million visitors per year, which is having a fantastic effect on further improving Tunis’ status as a cultural capital for tourists.

With most of the pieces in it having been moved from sites in Tunisia and North Africa, for example Carthage, tourists wouldn’t expect anything less than to see something magnificent upon visiting.

Unlike the collections usually found in other Mediterranean countries, the Bardo contains an absolutely stunning collection of Roman and Byzantine mosaics, the majesty and artistry of which not remotely marred by the two-thousand years since merchants installed them into their palaces across the Med.

The once heavy, gloomy interior now offers a colourful, shining example of what a great Mediterranean museum could and should be – something that shows off the treasures within in an enticing manner.

Tourists are reporting that the shiny new threshold is a pleasure to cross over, and that they are met with incredible discs of colour and energy crowd that together on a new wall situated cleverly beneath a skylight. The walls have been masterfully and thoughtfully curved around the mosaics in order to make them, not the walls themselves, dictate the way visitors move around and view the pieces in the museum.

A fantastic piece of architecture, the Bardo is sure to only attract more and more visitors with more coverage on review and news sites, travel blogs and social media, as well as traditional word of mouth – if you’re enticed by what you’ve read, you can book your African holidays with Mahlatini.com.

Support for tourism recovery in Tunisia

 

The UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) will support the Recovery Plan designed by the Ministry of Tourism of Tunisia to revive the tourism sector. The agreement was reached during the recent official visit of UNWTO Secretary-General to Tunisia (April 20-21, 2011).

During his visit, UNWTO Secretary-General Taleb Rifai met Interim President Fouad Mebazaa, the Minister of Tourism Mehdi Houas, as well as representatives from the private sector to discuss the best ways to support tourism in Tunisia. Issues discussed include the new advertising campaign to be launched by the Ministry of Tourism in early May, travel advisories, and public and private partnerships.

President Fouad Mebazaa underlined the importance of tourism to Tunisia as a “basic sector of the country’s economy.” Meeting President Mebazaa, UNWTO Secretary-General showed confidence in the rebound of tourism and in the future of the country. “Remarkable changes have occurred in Tunisia, and the future is bright,” he said.

During a joint press conference with the Minister of Tourism Mehdi Houas and the UNWTO Secretary-General expressed his full support to the Tunisian tourism sector. “Tunisia is, and will continue to be, a leading tourism destination. Tourism is not in crisis in Tunisia, rather it is living the natural impact of the significant changes that have occurred in the country,” said Mr. Rifai. “It is now time to show the world the real situation of Tunisia and the world will see that Tunisia is ready to receive its visitors.”

Furthermore, the UNWTO Secretary-General warned against the temptation of short-term recovery measures based on lower prices and stressed that medium- and long-term prospects for the tourism sector in Tunisia are even more positive than before. “The new environment,” he said, “can create new open and transparent conditions for investment in tourism, namely foreign investment, and unlock significant local business potential.”

UNWTO support to Tunisia will include technical meetings of the Tourism Recovery Task Force created by the Ministry of Tourism with UNWTO experts on communication, the holding of a workshop in Tunis for public and private sector representatives on recovery techniques, and the organization of a major tourism international conference in Tunisia in the last quarter of 2011.

Representing 6.5% of the country’s GDP and accounting for 450,000 jobs, tourism is a key driver of the economy in Tunisia and will play a critical role in its socio-economic stability and future development. In 2010, Tunisia received nearly 7 million international tourist arrivals, generating US$2.7 billion in export revenues. During the first three months of 2011, international tourist arrivals decreased by 44%.

Tunisian tourism is on the rise

Tourism in Tunisia and across North Africa took a dive following the numerous uprisings and riots.

But it appears that it may be returning to a favoured holiday destination by us Brits.

The TripAdvisor website said there was a 19 percent rise in traffic for Tunisia in the four days after the foreign office downgraded the travel warning for the country.

The Foreign Office removed the warning on Friday, which had advised against all but essential travel to the troubled country.

Many tour operators that had cancelled package holidays to Tunisia and Egypt are now reconsidering resuming them.

Flights are expected to re-start next month.

Emma O’Boyle, of TripAdvisor said: “”It is always important to check with the Foreign Office before travelling but this is encouraging news for British travellers and tour operators, as well as the Tunisian travel industry.”

Tour operator Thomas Cook plans to start back up its flights to Tunisia in May.

Their cancellations totalled 150,000 during the North African uprisings. Of the cancellations 110,000 were to Egypt and 40,000 to Tunisia.

The group confirmed that disturbances in these two destinations would cost about £20m in the second quarter of its fiscal year.

Manny Fontenla-Novoa, CEO of Thomas Cook Group said: “Business is doing well despite disruptions caused by unrest in Tunisia and Egypt.”

And in Egypt the popular Red Sea resorts are now considered a safe place to holiday again.

Alistair Burt, the Foreign Office Minister, said: “The situation in Egypt remains fluid and we still advise against all but essential travel to Cairo, Alexandria, Luxor and Suez.

“The situation in the Red Sea resorts remains calm. There’s no evidence that there’s anything in the Red Sea resorts which would lead to concern.

“We will keep this under regular review. The safety and security of British Nationals remains at the forefront of our minds.”

Sarah Taylor