Packages: Simon Calder paid £225 for a three-day package to Tenerife through the direct-sell operator Corona Holidays (0181-530 3747), including flights from Luton and B&B accommodation at the three-star El Medano. Corona organises holidays to all the Canary Islands; the normal duration is one week. Many other tour operators feature Tenerife.

Flights: Tenerife is one destination where charters are more convenient than scheduled flights. Fares are high even for charters because of the distance. You can expect to pay about £185 including tax for a non-stop flight from numerous UK airports, through agents such as Avro (0181-715 1999).

Iberia (0171-830 0011) has a fare of £185 for scheduled flights from Heathrow. The drawback is having to change planes in Madrid, but you can turn this to your benefit by taking advantage of the free stopover of up to 24 hours in the Spanish capital.

Car rental: Holiday Autos (0171-491 1111) charges £99 for a small car for a week, inclusive of everything except fuel. Locally hired vehicles may be cheaper still; Las Americas is full of competing car-rental companies, and rates are lower than anywhere else in Spain.

Further information: Spanish Tourist Office, 57 St James's Street, London SW1A 1LD (0171-499 0901). Patronato de Turismo de Tenerife, Plaza de Espana, Santa Cruz de Tenerife (00 34 22 60 55 92).