Alice-Azania Jarvis: 'My budget trip to Spain is saving me lots of dosh'
In The Red
Saturday 08 May 2010
As you read this, I should be suspended somewhere over Europe, en route to my first overseas holiday in several years. I'll be staying on a farm near Fuenteheridos, Andalusia, and I couldn't be more excited. I mentioned a couple of weeks ago my reasons for choosing the location: I needed somewhere remote, to curb my spending, and Spain is cheaper to get to than most countries. After a financially disastrous Staycation in Cornwall last year, I was determined to go overseas.
And so far, I've yet to regret my decision. True, it hasn't been all plain sailing: there have been the predictable hidden costs (the farm's remoteness may be an attribute, but it has necessitated the use of a hire car; and the flights, while still reasonable-ish weren't quite the sub-£20 bargain I had envisaged). The way things stand, though, there should be no repeat of last year's emergency overdraft extension, made mid-way through a costly day trip to St Ives.
Heck, even my packing has been pain-free. Usually, summer holidays are preceded by extreme drops in levels of self confidence. Bikinis, I squeal (inwardly, I hope), I can't wear them! Shorts? But look at my pasty legs! This year, however, I am approaching my self-image rather more philosophically. Urgh, I thought as I tried on last year's tatty, too-tight, summer gear, you don't look anything like those beach-bag toting Sunday supplement models. And then I realised: it doesn't matter! No one can see you sunbathe when you're camped out on a farm in rural Spain. Given this, I've done not a jot of summer shopping, and my wallet is all the fatter for it.
All of which has left me incredibly freaked out. Why is everything going so well? Even the Great Volcano Disaster has subsided. Things like this just don't go smoothly for me. Trust me. I'm bound to have done something wrong, aren't I?
So concerned am I at this prospect, that I've spent much of the past week attempting to pre-empt my inevitable mistakes. I've even bought an extra toothbrush to pack in advance, so that there's no chance of my leaving it in the bathroom the night before. It's just too good to be true. So, take this as an advanced warning: I may not be here next week. Given how smoothly my plans have gone, it seems almost certain that I'm about to be arrested, stranded or robbed. Or worse: perhaps it will rain. God, I hope it doesn't rain.
Independent Partners; request a free guide on NISAs from Hargreaves Lansdown
- 1 Scottish independence: Ireland since 1919 is a lesson for Scotland in what a Yes vote means
- 2 Thailand deaths: Pair's bloodied bodies found naked on Koh Tao beach
- 3 Lego breaks out of the toy box and heads for the gallery
- 4 Julian Assange and Edward Snowden join piracy mogul Kim Dotcom’s political campaign in New Zealand
- 5 Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
The political class is doing what Hitler couldn’t – destroying Britain
Scottish independence: Nationalist leader Jim Sillars threatens pro-union companies with 'day of reckoning' after independence
Scottish independence: Yes campaign feels the heat as Alex Salmond's NHS claims come under furious attack
£23m Birmingham cycle scheme is attacked by Tory councillor for not catering to the elderly
Salmond accused of laughing off national debt with ‘what are they going to do: invade?’ joke
iJobs Money & Business
£20 - 24k (Uncapped Commission - £35k Year 1 OTE): Guru Careers: We are seekin...
£20 - 24k + Benefits: Guru Careers: This is a great opportunity for an enthusi...
£280 - £320 per day: Ashdown Group: The Ashdown Group have been engaged by a l...
£400 - £450 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: **URGENT CONTRACT ROLE**...
Day In a Page
A first-floor flat with two bedrooms, a spacious reception room and communal grounds in a leafy part of London
A three-bedroom flat with a spacious rootop terrace and balcony, accessed from a private gated courtyard
A Grade II-listed pile with six bedrooms, stables and 39 acres of grounds in Standlake
A two-bedroom flat with boutique hotel-style interiors, close to the foodie haunt of West End Lane
A two-bedroom flat in a beautiful old vicarage, with many original features, close to the city centre
A three-bedroom 16th-century home with an aga kitchen, private gardens and heated outdoor pool, in Hadleigh
A three-bedrom home in sought-after Queen's Gate Mews, with Italian marble-finished bathrooms
Surrounded by glorious countryside in the village of Udimore, sits this impressive four-kiln oast and barn conversion
A five-bedroom house in the picturesque village of Kettlewell, north Yorkshire
An 18th-century former coaching inn with original staircase, open fireplaces and beams throughout
A Grade II-listed Georgian town house with three bedrooms and a south-facing courtyard, near Arundel Castle
Feel on top of the world at this über chic penthouse on the 37th floor of one of Europe’s tallest blocks.
A Grade II-listed Victorian villa with six bedrooms and two further cottages, all with spectacular sea views
A grade II-listed, Georgian cottage with mature 50ft garden, perfect for summer entertaining
A magnificent Georgian pile with turrets, seven bedrooms, a heated pool and four acres of gardens
Fairoak Farm has five bedroom suites, gym, outdoor swimming pool and golf course
Chic two-bedroom river-fronted flat with a private lift that delivers you directly to your home
A spectacular seven-bedroom Tudor pile, once owned by Henry VIII, with 18 acres of land
A seven-bedroom Georgian property previously used as a picturesque wedding venue
A split-level flat in a church conversion with two en suite bedrooms and 1,200sq ft of living space
A three-bedroom bungalow situated behind an impressive stone wall, £645,000
Windsor Castle overlooks this three-bedroom Victorian cottage located on one of Windsor's smartest roads
Chapel House is a former vicarage with nine bedrooms in the beautiful Upper Wye Valley
A five-bedroom B&B and separate owner's accomodation with potential for conversion
Enjoy summer by the Thames in this two double-bedroom converted warehouse in Rotherhithe village
A one-bedroom, luxury apartment with private gym and concierge service in Moorgate
A four-bedroom house in Hermitage Gardens with three reception rooms and landscaped gardens
A seven-bedroom Grade II-listed property with a separate self-contained apartment
A five-bedroom Victorian house with three reception rooms and galleried landing, £695,000
A six-bedroom farmhouse with five acres of land in a former cloth-making village
A secluded seven-bedroom detached house with large private garden, £490,000
A three-bedroom cottage overlooking Sarratt village green with open fires and solid oak floors
A three-bedroom maisonette flat in a Grade I-listed, Georgian townhouse in a sought-after location
A one-bedroom apartment located within a private gated development, north of Turnham Green
Look forward to a brighter future at two-bedroom Sunny Cottages, ideal for Londoners looking to downsize
A three-bedroom red-brick cottage with outbuildings and pretty gardens, £200,000
This three-bedroom flat within a former textile factory spans the corner of the fourth floor and has a balcony