The ideal resort for a June honeymoon, and advice on currency for a trip to Dubai
Q&A: Travel unravelled
Wednesday 04 January 2012
Q. We are tying the knot on 9 June and are thinking of going to the Riviera Maya in Mexico. We have looked at numerous all-inclusive hotels but have so far been unable to find a suitable resort. We're looking for one that is exclusive to adults and has 24-hour room service, ideally with a fantastic pool and some nightlife. Chrissie and Shaun, Lymington, Hampshire
A. First, congratulations on your impending marriage – and the impeccable timing. Your wedding takes place the day after Euro 2012 starts. The football tournament is stifling demand for outbound holidays from the UK, meaning prices are lower and availability higher than usual. But it's difficult to recommend a hotel on the Riviera Maya at that time. Not because they're no good, but because you would be travelling to Mexico's Caribbean coast when the temperature is soaring and the hurricane season is beginning.
Consider instead the Thomson Sensatori properties in Tenerife or Crete; the former is more stylish, but the latter has more cultural wealth nearby. More expensive, but potentially more rewarding: Club Mark Warner is opening a new, purpose-built resort this year in Rhodes, a classy and adventurous option with windsurfing, mountain-biking and kayaking.
If these are not exotic or exciting enough, then consider Mauritius – at its climatic best in June. The nightlife is a bit rudimentary, though.
Q. Can you let me know the best currency for Dubai? Tom Creek, Bexley
AThe short answer is the UAE dirham. It is locked to the US dollar at AED3.67 = USD1. So if the dollar is trading at 1.50 to the pound, you can expect AED5.50 for £1.
How to change money? You could spend half an hour trawling up and down the bureaux de change in Queensway, west London, seeking the best rate. Or your local post office will sell you a few dirhams to tide you over; the no-commission rule means you can change just £20. The best plan is to take sterling cash, change some at Dubai airport and the remainder in the city centre, where rates are competitive.
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