Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: Chasing a 'reasonable cost' holiday in Bermuda
Every day our travel guru answers your travel questions
Simon Calder’s career in travel started at Gatwick Airport, where he cleaned aircraft for Laker Airways and later worked as a security officer. He became The Independent’s Travel Correspondent in 1994, and is known as “the Man Who Pays His Way” because he does not accept free travel facilities. He writes across the Independent titles, as well as for the Evening Standard.
Wednesday 19 December 2012
Q Is there any way to get and stay in Bermuda for two weeks in 2013 at a reasonable cost, eg in a B&B or a small hotel?
A The remains of a volcanic cataclysm in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean may not sound like the location for a great holiday. But in the shape of Bermuda, nature has delivered travellers a green and pleasant land that, for four centuries, has been the gateway to the New World. The challenge is to stay there at what you call “reasonable cost”.
Bermuda is classy, friendly and fascinating, but the archipelago is never a cheap destination. British Airways has a monopoly on flights from Europe, and the entry level from Gatwick is £646 return. (Bermuda is, incidentally, an excellent destination on which to spend Avios points collected through the BA loyalty scheme.)
Next, accommodation. Cheap B&Bs are not Bermuda's style. Reckon on a minimum of £100 per person per night for a double if you are booking independently. You can get better deals if you book a package, for example through BA Holidays (baholidays.com). March is a lovely time to be in Bermuda, with mostly sunny, calm days; departing around 12 March, you will pay £2,001 per person for a fortnight at the attractive, friendly Rosedon Hotel in the capital, Hamilton. That's £97 per person per night, including a substantial breakfast out on the terrace, afternoon tea, and even taxi vouchers to the beaches of the South Shore.
Anything significantly cheaper is likely to be a long way from Hamilton, leaving you less well located for Bermuda's public transport network of buses and ferries. Foreigners are not allowed to rent cars, though you can hire a scooter, a bicycle or an electric power-assisted bike.
At the risk of stating the obvious, an excellent way to economise is to make a shorter trip. A week at the Rosedon falls to £1,278 per person, interestingly only £90 per person per night - and a good £25 less than the rate if you book direct. The price looks competitive with upmarket experiences elsewhere in the world. Compare prices with Kuoni (kuoni.co.uk).
Finally, you might want to view The Independent's 48 Hours in Bermuda filmed earlier this year, and voted best Travel Broadcast Programme for 2012: bit.ly/Bermuda48.
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