News

Government are now in discussions over how to remove the rabbit without damaging the statue of the anti-apartheid icon

Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: Not so clever? Is this hotels site too good to be true?

Q. I've been checking prices for hotels in the USA on a comparison website and there are some really good deals with Clever-hotels.com. But are they too good to be true?

Joanne Hill

Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: Poor compensation for 24-hour delay

Q. Our Delta flight from Bloomington, USA to Manchester was cancelled after waiting at the airport for seven hours, due to "technical reasons". We were rebooked and flew the next day, in effect 24 hours later. The only compensation KLM - which handles Delta customer services in UK - has offered is a £300 voucher (£100 per passenger) valid for 12 months.

It appears that as the flight was from a non EU airport, the carrier was a non EU carrier, and it was technical reasons for cancellation and not overbooking, the airline is under no obligation to compensate me. Is this correct? It seems scandalous that non EU airlines have this "get out of jail free" card, tough luck to the passenger. Do I have any other avenues to pursue this further?

"JK"

Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: Is it safe to holiday in Marrakech?

Q. Is it safe to holiday in Marrakech at the moment? We were thinking of going early in April.

Al Bye, Southend

Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: Is Thomas Cook in good health?

Q. I am due to pay the balance of just over £3,000 for a holiday in Crete with Thomas Cook. It will be paid with a debit card. What you think of the security of this travel company?

Bill Rogers

Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: Help me plan a first-time visit to Japan

Q. I am planning a first trip to Japan, and wondered where to stay in Tokyo - and which other places to visit?

Name Withheld

Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: Europe, from Scotland, on a budget

Q. I hope to have a family holiday this year with my husband, two sons (aged six and four), along with my 73-year-old mother in law. We are on a tight budget this year and are interested in France/Italy/Spain, however the internet is a mine field! We can drive if it's not too far. Can you recommend anything?

Caroline McDonald, Glasgow

Cuba is a fabulous island, but with some annoying habits to contend with – such as its mad financial system

Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: Coping with two currencies in Cuba

Q. My daughter is off to Cuba. Her worry is money. If the Cubans don't accept dollars, should she take pounds? And what is the best way of getting cash?

Name withheld

Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: In search of a sunny holiday in March

Q. We are seeking the sun in March. Would you recommend Marawila in Sri Lanka, or Sinai in Egypt - or should we look elsewhere? We want a hot climate but we don't want high humidity or high winds.

Hillie MacLaren

Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: How a 32-hour Christmas Day can save you money flying to LA

Q. I want to go to Los Angeles over Christmas and New Year but flights are so expensive. When can I bag a good deal?

Peter May, Romford

Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: What are Madeira prices like in May?

Q. I am going to Madeira in May and would like to the prices for eating out, and also the cost of drinks.

Karen Eaton

Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: What are the rules about changing cash for India?

Q. I'm travelling to India next month. Is it true that I should buy my rupees in India, and that I can’t bring them back to the UK?

Susan Persaud

Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: How best to combine Toronto, Detroit and Niagara Falls

Q. I am planning a summer holiday this year with my husband and would love to go to Toronto, see the city and also visit Niagara Falls. We have friends in Detroit so I thought this would be a good opportunity to see them as well. I wondered how best to get ourselves to Detroit from Toronto. We're more than happy to hire a car but will crossing borders cause a huge problem that is best avoided? As we’re on holiday we’d prefer not to sit in airports when we could be seeing the scenery.

Alison Lawton

Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: Do we have to pay for an Australian visa if we hold British and Irish passports?

Q. We hold British and Irish passports. Do we have to pay for an Australian visa, or can we get them free?

Tracey Kelly, Luton

Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: When should I book my Faro flight?

Q. I want to book a flight to Faro in September. Will the price go up every day from now, or could it get cheaper?

Loule Lou, by Twitter

Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: What's the best deal for one-way to Oz?

Q. I am planning a one-way trip to Oz from Edinburgh, time and changes no object. Any suggestions? My dad says you're in the know.

@WeeSlice, by Twitter

Arts and Entertainment
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Morrissey pictured in 2013
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sportVan Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players
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environmentA large chunk of Mount Snowdon, in north Wales, is up for sale
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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Dress the Gaza situation up all you like, but the truth hurts

Robert Fisk on Gaza conflict

Dress the situation up all you like, but the truth hurts
Save the tiger: Tiger, tiger burning less brightly as numbers plummet

Tiger, tiger burning less brightly

When William Blake wrote his famous poem there were probably more than 100,000 tigers in the wild. These days they probably number around 3,200
5 News's Andy Bell retraces his grandfather's steps on the First World War battlefields

In grandfather's footsteps

5 News's political editor Andy Bell only knows his grandfather from the compelling diary he kept during WWI. But when he returned to the killing fields where Edwin Vaughan suffered so much, his ancestor came to life
Lifestyle guru Martha Stewart reveals she has flying robot ... to take photos of her farm

Martha Stewart has flying robot

The lifestyle guru used the drone to get a bird's eye view her 153-acre farm in Bedford, New York
Former Labour minister Meg Hillier has demanded 'pootling lanes' for women cyclists

Do women cyclists need 'pootling lanes'?

Simon Usborne (who's more of a hurtler) explains why winning the space race is key to happy riding
A tale of two presidents: George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story

A tale of two presidents

George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story
Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover

The dining car makes a comeback

Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover
Gallery rage: How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?

Gallery rage

How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?
Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players

Eye on the prize

Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players
Women's rugby: Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup

Women's rugby

Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup
Save the tiger: The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy

How Samuel Beckett became a French Resistance spy

As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
We will remember them: relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War

We will remember them

Relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War
Star Wars Episode VII is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
Once stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover

Acting in video games gets a makeover

David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices