Romantic City Breaks

romantic break

A romantic break is the perfect opportunity to spend some quality time together, but that doesn’t mean that you have to spend all your cash.

 A city break is one of the most versatile getaways for lovebirds: it can be traditional or ultra modern, relaxing or fast-paced – there’s so much to choose from. Here are a few ways to cut the costs, without losing the romance.

1. Spend a little extra time doing your research

You want your break to be special, and you also want to get a great deal, so doing some extra homework will bring you rewards. Check with friends for recommendations, read a few travel blogs, and check out guides on hotel and travel websites such as the one on lastminute.com

Then make a wish list of hotels and bed and breakfasts, making sure that you put yourself on their mailing lists and follow them on social media for sales, deals and competitions.

For the biggest savings, either book well in advance or look out for late availability offers, then book through websites that offer discounts, freebies and cashback on top of that. As an extra bonus, a late booking will look spontaneous and exciting, so remember to check LateRooms.com and sign up to discount sites such as Living Social and Bespoke Offers.

2. Focus on the room

You’re more likely to spend time in your room during a romantic break, so if you do have any spare cash then spend it on the room rather than flights or entertainment. Always, always check out pictures of the accommodation, and read reviews so you know what you’re getting – big holiday and hotel sites such as Hotels.com also feature TripAdvisor reviews, as well as offering competitive deals.

You can save extra by booking off season, by choosing hotels with breakfast included or other meal deals, and by choosing locations that are slightly off the main tourist drag or in a quieter suburb. For example, the chic, quirky Hotel Des Academies Des Artes in Paris is a short way out of the city centre on the arty Rive Gauche, and is a bit of a steal compared to similar boutique hotels, with prices from £121 per night via Hotels.com.

Once you’ve found the perfect hotel or bed and breakfast, use a price comparison site such as Trivago to find out which companies are offering those rooms for the best price. Remember to clear the cookies in your browser before making a booking through TopCashback, as using comparison sites can sometimes interfere with tracking.

For example, the airy, elegant Hope Street Hotel in Liverpool is slap bang in the middle of the city’s cultural quarter, and by using Trivago we found double rooms from as low as £72 per night.

3. Find the cheapest flights

If you’re going abroad and only taking a short flight, it’s fine to make it a cheap one. Research a range of different dates and times to get the best prices. Earlier flights may be cheaper, and you’ll get there in time for a leisurely lunch before checking in at your hotel.

Ask nicely for an upgrade when you get to the airport, and you’ll sometimes get a better seat than you paid for. Also consider spending a few pounds to gain access to the airport’s business lounge, for a more relaxing start to your special trip. Try No1Traveller.com or Holiday Extras who have lounge passes from £12 plus cashback.

4. Food, drink and sightseeing

Make the most of any free breakfast, ‘cocktails on arrival’ or ‘champagne included’ offers. Many romantic hotels have excellent restaurants too and dinner will be included in some deals, so look out for those.

Going out to eat is better value than room service, so plan for at least one special meal out during your stay, and make reservations for popular venues well in advance. If you want to go to a fancy restaurant, set menus and lunchtimes are good ways to save.

Sightseeing doesn’t need to cost anything at all, and what could be more romantic than walking hand in hand along a scenic route? The free GPSmyCity apps each have several planned walks on them and allow you to pinpoint your location in real time if you’re prone to getting a little lost. Alternatively, the 2015 Guidepal City Guides app lets you create your own itinerary and use 57 city maps offline, so you aren’t burning through your smartphone’s data allowance.

You could be strolling along a riverbank, taking in some grand architecture, or enjoying beautiful parks and gardens, depending on your location. You could even combine a city break with a walk on a nearby beach if you book a hotel in Barcelona or Brighton.

To give you some inspiration, the glossy, glamorous Melia Barcelona Sky hotel in Barcelona is a nightlife hotspot and boasts a spa and popular bar, but it’s also a 10-minute walk from the beach. Prices start from £88 per night, via Venere or booking.com.

What’s the most romantic holiday you’ve ever taken?

All prices correct at time of writing, but availability and rates may be subject to change at short notice. Please check merchant notes on the merchant page before purchasing.

Posted on 26 May 2015  |  Posted in  Cashback Diary
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