The big autumn travel statement: What to watch out for in 2024!
Chalkmarks: Bruges, Belgium, 2022

Good morning. This is what happened in the world of travel this week: Friday 24th November 2023

WHILE you’re still wondering what to make of Jeremy Hunt’s autumn statement, travel insiders at Expedia, Tui, Tourism New Zealand and Visit England were sharing their news – all good btw. On Wednesday we heard 2023 had been about set-jetting, low-season holidays and staycations. So tell us, what about 2024 – where can we spend our £450 the Chancellor has given us? Well, next year will be less about hitting a city or a beach, instead it’ll be about following our fave films and singers around the planet, while trying to save some cash. The expert, panoramic, vision of 2024 looks like this… Get ready to oooh and arghh. Here’s this week’s travel headlines!

On your holibobs!

Not tired of this: Staying as one of the biggest growing trends will be set-jetting based on travel to a film-set location. Bridgerton is likely to boost travel to and within the UK with series 3 coming out next year. Also Wednesday series 2 is due to be released in 2024 fuelling travel to Romania.

Can you keep a secret? Look out for much more destination duped. This is where we go to an alternative, hidden, hotspot that’s much cheaper than the Insta-crowded location… Enter Albania for its “Italian” and “Maldives” vibes.

Winning formula: There’s tour tourism where we go to see bands play such as Taylor Swift, currently on her Eras Tour. Earlier this month Conde Nast wrote how the American super pop star is “swiftly transforming the world of travel”. The OG Madonna is also on tour – and why pay £750 to see her in London when you can see her in Belgium for £400? (Chalkmarks is not sure about these figures btw).

Phat lie: This is dry tripping – an alcohol-free trip – a shift on from wellness. We have nothing more to say. What you gonna do in Madeira, or Porto? Chalkmarks suggests you drink before you go!

Book today: Nine out of ten Black Friday holiday deals are good, and genuinely cheaper than weeks later. That’s according to the consumer experts at Which? who track prices all year round. While shoppers are warned about dud electrical deals, there are real discounts on flights, packages and cruises. Chalkmarks is thankful for thanksgiving. We gotta go!

Have you seen our pictures: Our fantastic travel photos, which capture some of our favourite destinations around the world, are now available for sale on Alamy. Woohoo!

Feel at home: Malta is like being in the UK but with the heat turned up. Valletta, the capital, has proudly kept its red post boxes, everyone speaks English, they drive on the left, and best of all they use British plugs. No wonder hundreds of us visit each year. News of any of this had never reached us so it was like a welcome homecoming on a weekend city break – only with better food, weather and beaches. It might be just a tiny dot in the middle of the Mediterranean but for sightseeing and shopping it more than punches above its weight. Here’s where to start.

Fill your boots: The cheapest Christmas market break is in Riga, Latvia, according to the boffins at Post Office Travel Money. They crunched the numbers and found a two-night trip for two, including the flight, a B&B and food from the markets costs £506. Okay (Christmas) cards on the table, it wasn’t the lowest priced on the planet it was just from a dozen European cities. Want to spend more? A trip to Vienna, Austria, will set you back £933. But who can complain when there’s gluhwein and gingerbread, roasted chestnuts, brandy coffee, potato pancakes, stollen, pastries, bread with cheese… dribble! Here’s the full 12 on MailOnline

Glastonbury tickets? They’re gone! Sold out by 9.57am on Sunday, in less than an hour. Those who missed out said on X: “Hope it rains”! Another wished for thunder! If you refreshed the page for an hour and didn’t get the payment page you’ve saved £360 and can go on holiday instead! The BBC has more.

This time last year: More hassle on trains but less on planes! Christmas rail strikes are announced while airports prepare to lift liquid limits Christmas was coming and so were train strikes and rail engineering works… The pound rose to $1.21 due to the weakening dollar… It was back in September that the pound fell to $1.03 – a record low – after Liz Truss’s massive mini Budget. We reported about it here in this newsletter… Holidaymakers they could soon keep their mini travel bottles in their bags with high-tech airport security machines coming in… Leeds Bradford was named the worst UK airport for its hour-long security lines… Fly Atlantic announced a 2024 route from Belfast to North America… The adventures of Robin Hood at Nottingham Castle ended after it closed down despite a £30 million revamp… Tourism chiefs had wanted to turn it into a  “world class heritage attraction” but bosses said visitor numbers were low… Windsor Castle was decked out for Christmas with a six-metre (20-foot) tree, stunning wreaths and twinkling Christmas lights. 

In case you don’t follow us on social media you really should. Here we are, here too and over here. Say hola muchacha! 

Happy Friyay!

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