Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: Is Egypt in November a good idea for a family holiday?
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.
Friday 26 October 2012
Q. I am thinking of taking my family in November to Hurghada for a week of sun at an all-inclusive hotel. The foreign website is not clear. Can you tell me if you think it will be OK?
Dan Lunn, Reading
A. Egypt in November is an excellent plan. The weather should be warm and sunny, cooling off pleasantly in the evening. Hurghada is a great destination: while the beaches are not as impressive as those of Sharm el Sheikh, you are in a real Egyptian town with plenty of life. And an excursion to the archaeological wonders of Luxor is a reasonable prospect.
More practically, November is the lowest of seasons in terms of price. You could take the DIY route - but if you go through a tour operator and buy a proper package holiday, you are assured of a good-quality hotel, and have someone to complain to if anything goes awry.
Thomson, for example, has plenty of high-quality all-inclusive holidays in Hurghada for less than £600 per person, departing from Gatwick (if you can go at the very end of November, it's under £500).
The cheapest flights-plus-accommodation deal I have found for the month is just under £500 per person. But this does not include baggage (Thomson allows 15kg each), and more importantly it does not give you the confidence of a holiday that is covered by the package-travel regulations - which basically say that the holiday firm is responsible for delivering the promised trip, and must take responsibility from departure to arrival back at Gatwick.
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