Tenerife holiday survival guide

Booking your holiday

The traditional method of booking a package holiday through a travel agent remains popular and does offer the advantage of simplicity and security. Using an ABTA travel agent will provide you with the possibility of getting your money back, should things go wrong - i.e. your airline going bust.

Many people now choose to book their own DIY holiday which involves booking your flights and accommodation seperately. The main advantages to this are that it provides complete flexibility for your chosen dates and for your choice of accommodation. To protect yourself financially, it is worth paying for your flights using a credit card, if possible.

In all cases you should make sure that you have an adequate level of travel insurance which will not only give you peace of mind, but financial recompense should you loose luggage, money, become ill and a whole range of other things too.


Before you leave

Apart from the obvious (passports, luggage etc), it is important to bring with you the contact names and numbers of the companies or people you have used to book your holiday. If you are on a package holiday, your booking confirmation should have all the information you might need. If you have booked your own DIY holiday you should make sure that you know your flight times and flight numbers, contact details for the accommodation, and how to get to your accommodation from the airport.


When you arrive - your holiday

Tenerife has two airports. The one which is most often used for flights to and from the UK is Reina Sofia, or Tenerife South Airport (TFS). The airport is around 15Km from the major tourist resorts and it's easy to get Taxis or transfers to and from the airport. The cost of a Taxi is just over 20 Euros, one way however there may be additional charges for luggage.

You will find that the weather in Tenerife is almost always sunny so no-matter what time of year you visit, you are almost guaranteed to get a suntan. July and August are the hottest months with temperatures in the very high twenties or low thirties. If you don't like the heat or have very young children it might be better to visit Tenerife during one of the other months. You will find that suncream is cheaper to buy in Tenerife than in the UK, with a massive choice being available.

One question which gets asked time and time again is "how much money should I bring with me?". Unfortunately there is no easy answer to that, but you will find that the cost of living in Tenerife is still lower than in the UK. If you are planning to eat out most nights and visit the local bars, you will find that there are some great offers around. It's not uncommon to see drinks and meals with deals such as "buy one get one free".

Buying day-to-day food and drinks is cheaper from the main supermarket chain Mercadona. There are plenty of smaller supermarkets which offer convenience, but you will most likely pay a little more for your shopping here.

If you are planning trips or excursions, you are most likely to make savings by buying your tickets on-line before your holiday. Tickets to Siam Park, Loro Parque and many other attractions can be bought on-line. Car hire can be cheaper than in the UK, and again, this can be booked on-line, in advance. Don't forget to bring your driving licence with you!

Contrary to popular belief, you don't have to buy a timeshare or even fake sunglasses when you visit Tenerife. Not unless you want to of course! PR's, Lookey Lookey people and timeshare sales people are all less prevelant on the streets than they used to be but if you do get approached, and you don't want the latest Rolex for 10 Euros or the holiday of a lifetime for the next twenty years, just say no thanks. You won't offend them - they've heard it all before!

Most importantly, enjoy yourself! Tenerife is a wonderful island with great people and excellent weather. If you have only ever seen the beaches of Tenerife on previous holidays, take a look around you. Tenerife has some spectacular scenery, and a trip up the mountain will see you pass through 5 climatic zones, each displaying their own characteristic fauna and flora.

Visit Tenerife and make it your holiday of a lifetime!