Car Rental

Why the key to booking a holiday vehicle is to cut out the middle-man

Q. We need to rent a people-carrier for a holiday in Switzerland. I have found a company called Honk Car Rental which promises: "We're like those mystery deals you sometimes get for hotels, but instead for car rental." Being very cautious, I follow the maxim that anything that appears too good to be true, probably is. So before paying for a car, do you know anything about them? Peter Canton, by email

The 10 Best money-saving websites

You can economise on everything from train tickets to phone bills – and get hold of lots of free stuff – if you know where to click

Deals of the week: Paris, the Algarve and Northern India

Less than £200... Armed with The Independent’s latest 48 Hours in Paris, take  Eurostar from London St Pancras on 26 January for two nights in the French capital for £193 – including B&B at the two-star Hotel Americain, close to Place de la République. Upgrade the train for £104 per person.

Traveller's guide: Puglia

Dramatic coastlines, untouched nature reserves and some of the country’s best food and wine are luring more holidaymakers to Italy’s heel, says Kate Simon.

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Deals of the week: Barcelona, Slovenia, California

Less than £200... September could see you in Barcelona for two nights at the swish B-Hotel, which has a rooftop pool and bar looking down over the Placa d'Espanya, for £195pp. The deal includes BA flights departing Heathrow on 16 September. Book by 10 July.

Summer 2012: 10 great family travel gadgets

LittleLife's new Animal Wheelie Duffles, in Ladybird and Turtle designs, will delight your little ones and nurture a sense of responsibility. The 20-litre bag has a zip top and telescopic handle; £39.99 (

Deals of the week: Barcelona, Venice, Seychelles

UNDER £200

BA Holidays has a fly-drive trip to Barcelona, with a week's car hire and flights from Heathrow in May, for £179pp. Accommodation is not included, but the package gives you the flexibility to roam the north-eastern Catalan region and book hotels along the road.