Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: What do you think about Austravel?
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 25 January 2013
Q. Could you please tell me what you think about Austravel as a company? We would like to use them when we travel to Australia at the end of the year.
A. I must have spent a good few thousand pounds over the years with Austravel, an experienced and competent agent. Twenty-five years ago, the company was instrumental in putting Australia on the map as a realistic holiday destination, when it arranged charter flights to the country – with fares below £500 for the first time, a revolutionary price point.
The company is now a subsidiary of Europe’s biggest holiday firm, TUI, and therefore financially rock solid.
But before you hand over your cash, shop around to see if another agent can improve on the price or service. Two other big competitors are Trailfinders and DialAFlight, and many other specialists are worth considering.
Click HERE to email Simon.
You can also tweet him your questions @SimonCalder
The Independent travel offers: Discover a world of inspiring destinations
- 1 The BBC has just done more to eradicate ‘terrorism’ than all our wars since 9/11
- 3 Mystery man who gave mum heart-warming note on train 'wanted to put a smile on her face'
Inside Travel: Greece 2015 Q&A - should we cancel our Greek holiday? Are our flights safe? And what will we be spending there?
Australia Day 2015: Best alternative places to visit
The 10 Best hiking boots
Hogwarts Express joins Warner Bros studio tour: The Harry Potter locations you can visit
Solo travel: From learning to surf to crewing a yacht
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
£21000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Located on the stunning Sandban...
£26 - 35k (DOE): Guru Careers: An Email Marketing Specialist is needed to join...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity to join a is a...
Unpaid voluntary work: Old Royal Naval College: Join our team of friendly volu...