Travel Take the plunge on MSC Preziosa

Thought cruising wasn't for you? Here's why you're wrong

All at sea: Norwegian Epic sets sail for Miami in October

Cruise Report: Flexible travellers can snap up 'repositioning' bargains

As summer in Europe winds down, flexible travellers can find bargains on a variety of unusual cruises. We are moving into the "repositioning" season. From late October to early December, numerous ships head west across the Atlantic to spend the winter months plying the warm waters of the Caribbean or South America. To help offset the cost of relocating the ships, cruise lines get paying passengers on board these one-off journeys by offering discounted fares. On these longer voyages – usually about two weeks – the cost per day can work out less than half of what it would be on a regular cruise.

The yawn of a new era: Bingo has gone totally 21st century

Gambling: Will a bad reputation finally make bingo cool?

Bingo has become the first Facebook game where punters play a virtual game for real money. Bingo Friendzy (sigh), is an app for over 18s that's branded with fluffy characters that look like the Tribbles from Star Trek/Moshi Monsters* (*delete depending on whether you're over or under 30).

Tom Cruise will film in UK, says David Cameron

The latest Tom Cruise blockbuster, a science-fiction thriller which also stars Emily Blunt, is to be made in Britain, David Cameron said last night.

Special Resort: Some cruise lines have created their own model islands, such as Coco Cay in the Bahamas

Something to Declare

You won't find authenticity in a model village

Observations: Escape the sodden summer with a mystery cruise on the good ship indie rock

This year's festivals have so far been a wash-out, so what better time to announce a new event on board a luxury cruise ship? Offshore will make its maiden voyage next September on the Norwegian Jade from Venice, then travel on to Croatia and Greece.

Susy Albertini, whose daughter Dayana Arlotti, five, was killed

Huge payout for family of Costa Concordia's youngest victim

Costa Cruises has offered survivors €11,000 but advisers are calling for €125,000

Festival revellers soaking up the fun at Coachella earlier this year

Music festival at sea: All aboard the good ship Coachella

Coachella, the Californian music festival famous for its relentless sun, beautiful A-list guests and fondness for resurrecting dead rappers via hologram, has just announced the inaugural SS Coachella, a festival at sea.

Kohlrabi (Brassica 'Purple Delicacy')

Caravan of love: How Joy Larkcom transformed the way we grow, cook and eat our greens

Emma Townshend pays homage to a woman whose passion for vegetables saw her take to the roads of Europe in the 1970s.

All aboard: Cruises are now including more in the fare
Phillips Idowu has not competed since the beginning of last month

'Invisible Man' Phillips Idowu returns to jump on any injury fears ahead of Olympics

Gold medal hope contradicts claims by Van Commenee over his fitness for London

The Expendables 2 videogame trailer gets ready for war

Calm, subtle and subdued it isn't...

Judge lifts Costa Corcodia captain Francesco Schettino's house arrest

An Italian judge lifted the house arrest order for the captain of the shipwrecked Costa Concordia cruiser liner today, but said he must remain in his hometown near Naples during the criminal investigation regarding the accident off the Tuscan coast that killed 32 people.

Tom Cruise tops the Forbes list, earning $75m in the past year

Let the divorce row begin... Tom Cruise tops Hollywood's rich list with $75m

His marriage is over, his 50th birthday party cancelled, but there's still some good news for Tom

Tom Cruise tops the Forbes list, earning $75m in the past year

Cruise outstrips top movie earners with $75m 'stellar' year

The stakes in Tom Cruise's increasingly ugly divorce battle were raised further yesterday with news that the actor can once more claim to be Hollywood's best-paid star, earning an estimated $75m (£50m) in the past year.

Katie Holmes pictured in New York on Monday

Let them wear heels! Tom Cruise's exes are free to walk tall

As if Tom Cruise weren't already suffering from Small Man Syndrome, pictures emerged yesterday of his newly estranged wife, Katie Holmes, wearing heels for what must be the first time since their union. On the Big Day itself, you'll recall, speculation was rife that Holmes had had to stand in a ditch to achieve parity of titchiness for the pair's wedding photo.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there