Travelling to Macao: visa requirements and hotel recommendations

Luxury shopping, casinos and opulent architecture are some of the main reasons why travellers love visiting the Special Administrative Region of Macao in China. As a matter of fact, it offers such a wide range of entertainment options and hospitality services that many choose it repeatedly as a favourite destination for city breaks, business trips, celebrations, meetings and events. Furthermore, Macao is also frequently chosen because of its flexible travel visa policy, which allows nationals of a long list of world countries to enter the territory freely for tourism purposes as long as they stay for the specified limited period of time and travel with a valid passport that won’t expire in at least one month.

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Who can visit Macau without a visa?

Visa exemption to travel to Macao in China is applicable to residents in Hong Kong (up to one year), visitors from the United Kingdom (up to six months), European travellers (up to ninety days) and those coming from Russia, Australia and the United States (up to thirty days), as well as to many other nationalities, so you are strongly encouraged to confirm your specific requirements and conditions with the corresponding official authorities at your local embassy. In some cases, you will simply be asked to apply for an entry permit upon arrival.

How to find a hotel in Macao

Even when the city is worldwide known as a luxury destination, you can still find good value for money accommodation without breaking the bank and enjoy everything Macao has to offer. Below, we provide three recommendations that have been rated with three, four and five stars respectively so that you can decide which sort of hotel in Macau best meets your trip expectations.

3-star hotel in Macau: the Royal Dragon

Strategically situated within short walking distance of centrally-located landmarks like the Guia Fortress and the World Trade Center, the Royal Dragon hotel provides the opportunity to enjoy a premium quality stay at an affordable rate. Its standard and superior guest rooms are fully-equipped with air conditioning, satellite TV, coffee amenities, a fridge for personal use, private bathroom and, in some cases, feature stunning city views. The experience of comfort and cosiness inside the rooms is complemented by an extensive choice of extra services, among which we count free WiFi internet throughout the premises, an onsite cocktail bar, a casino, round-the-clock parking, rooms for families, wheelchair accessible facilities and non-smoking spaces. Surrounding the hotel, travellers will easily find a broad selection of local restaurants and supermarkets, and those who are also curious about arts and history will be delighted to come across the Macau Museum of Art and the Macao Cultural Centre, less than one kilometre away from the establishment. The closest airport is Macau International, which can be reached by driving across a bridge connecting the heart of the city with Taipa island; the journey takes about twelve minutes. Some visitors choose the ferry or shuttle buses as an alternative to driving.

Grand Emperor Hotel (4 stars)

When looking for a good hotel in Macau, hospitality establishments like the Grand Emperor in the very heart of the city may truly meet the travellers’ expectations. Close to many luxury hotels, restaurants, casinos and shopping areas, its staff pay particular attention to ensure that your whole stay is seamless as well as to make you feel well taken care of. To start with, they provide airport pick-up service at no extra charge that must be requested during the reservation process. Their modern rooms and studios are ready to accommodate solo travellers, couples and families and cater for their every need with in-room amenities and ensuite bathroom. During their trip, visitors are entitled to a daily breakfast buffet inside the facilities, and can equally benefit from extras such as massages at the Thai Spa, delicious food at their three restaurants, a business centre to catch up with work and a casino to disconnect and have fun. Otherwise, if you feel like sparing some time for sightseeing, know that the Macau Government House, St Augustine’s Square and the Cathedral of Macao are all reachable on foot from this point.

Luxury hotel in Macau: the Grand Lapa

This 5-star hotel in Macao is located in the popular Avenida da Amizade, only a 10-minute drive from the airport and close to the Grand Prix Museum, the Fisherman’s Wharf, the Tea Culture House and the Hong Kong Macau Ferry Terminal, which offers wonderful views. The deluxe rooms and suites at the Grand Lapa feature different arrangements to accommodate individual guests, couples and families, and all feature a mini fridge, air-conditioning system, satellite TV and en suite bathroom with toiletries. The facilities comprise an outdoor swimming-pool, free parking spaces for guests, a spa centre and three restaurants specialising in Italian, Cantonese and Thai food respectively. For an absolute wellness experience, guests are invited to enrol in the fitness and yoga classes that take place on site.

Self-catering accommodation in Europe

Do you really want to enjoy your holidays this year? Are you going on a work trip that will be decisive for your business? When travelling abroad, certain circumstances call for new necessities, such as being able to organise your own time and have your own space, thus avoiding dependence on external services. If you get the chance to stay in a self-catered accommodation that actually feels like a home away from home and provides you with everything you need to cook your preferred meals at the time of the day that suits you best, it is very likely that you will adapt better to a new time zone, be more productive while you are there and have more energy to live the experience to the fullest.

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What are self-catering holidays exactly?

Regardless of the type of accommodation you choose, a self-catering or self-catered holiday enables travellers to experience their stay as though they were locals: staying in a new city or spending a couple of weeks by the seaside yet doing without amenities like room service, concierge, front desk and cleaning staff. This way, they will be in charge of the grocery shopping and will cook whatever they like whenever they feel like it. And, although some places offer optional maid services, visitors will normally be responsible for house chores as well.

Most self-catered apartments, villas, bungalows, flats and cottages include a fully-equipped kitchenette with tea and coffee facilities, oven, vitroceramic hob, appliances, sink and fridge, while many others also supply washing machines, cleaning utensils and clothesline on the balcony or terrace.

What are the advantages of booking self-catering accommodation for your trip?

Often times, when you travel, you seek the perks of being served and catered, for instance, by going to the hotel buffet for breakfast or visiting the onsite restaurant for every meal. Nevertheless, this option turns out to be the most expensive, even when you take an all-inclusive package. Self-catering accommodation is frequently much cheaper than all the other categories, since a good number of expenses are obviously cut out.

Furthermore, this freedom to organise your time and meals translates into a much flexible trip with higher amounts of available time and less stress in general. Vegans, vegetarians and travellers with specific dietary needs –such as gluten-free, sugar-free or low-fat diets- can equally benefit from this modality as it is a guarantee that they can control and know what they eat at all times.

Types of self-catered accommodation

Deciding which type of self-catering holiday you want is easy thanks to the wide array of existing categories. Here you go some ideas:

Studio apartment in the city centre: a perfect option for tourists to go unnoticed and for business travellers to attend their appointments in a more relaxed manner. By staying in a self-catered apartment in Berlin, London or Paris, you will live your trip like a local while benefitting from the chance to immerse yourself in the bustling life of a big city.

Beach apartments are recommended for those looking for a peaceful retreat where they will interact with their travel companions only, unless they are on a solo vacation. In a one or two-bedroom studio apartment with kitchenette you will enjoy all the freedom you need to disconnect from the world during your holiday in Tenerife or Corfu, for instance.

Holiday villas tend to be larger and can accommodate big groups who may be celebrating a special occasion or perhaps organising a hen or stag party. For example, a self-catering villa in Ibiza or Mallorca give you the opportunity to be the real host of your event abroad, as you will be in charge of everything without intermediaries.

Bungalows are a smaller and cheaper accommodation recommended for beach vacations, during which you will also have an equipped kitchen at your disposal, and in most cases virtually everything you will need being far away from home. This category is popular for holidays in Gran Canaria island (Spain) and similar destinations.

If you opt for countryside destinations, look for rural houses or self-catered cottages: Switzerland and Norway have the best ones.

And lastly, many other European capitals like Prague, Kraków or Budapest offer travellers a variety of self-catering flats and rental properties for an affordable, hassle free stay.

Do you already know how to find and secure a self-catered apartment for your next trip or holiday? If you don’t, we advise you to read our article on how to book accommodation online.

Flying to Manaus airport in Brazil

Most travellers planning to visit the Brazilian Amazon must fly into Manaus International Airport in Northern Brazil so as to be able to stay close to the rainforest and enjoy the diverse river cruises and tours on offer in this area. Known by locals as Eduardo Gomes airport and with the assigned IATA code MAO, it has two terminal buildings –a main one and a supporting one- from which some international operations are handled although it primarily serves as a domestic hub for flights to Manaus originating in other Brazilian airports.

Taking a flight to Manaus

The airlines listed below sell seats to fly to Manaus from other cities within the country as well as from selected international airports:

American Airlines (from Miami), Azul Airlines (from Belo Horizonte, Belém, Boa Vista, Campinas, Fortaleza, Cuiabá, Porto Velho, Recife, Santarém, Tefé and Tabatinga), Avior (from Barcelona in Venezuela), Copa Airlines (Panamá City), Gol (Buenos Aires in Argentina, Brasilia, Campo Grande, Foz do Igaçu, Rio Branco, Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo) and LATAM (from Salvador and other destinations already mentioned above).

Commuting from Manaus airport to the city centre

Manaus is only 14 kilometres away from Eduardo Gomes airport, and easily accessible by bus or taxi from the arrivals area of each passenger terminal. However, if you wish to have greater independence to get around during your trip, we advise you to rent a car at either the Avis office (T1) or the Thifty one (T2) conveniently located after baggage claim.

What to do in Manaus International airport of Brazil

Both upon arrival and while you wait to board your plane, there is plenty to do in MAO’s public and restricted zones. You can try the finest traditional delicacies and meals if you go to “Casa do Pao de Queijo” –in the departures area of Terminal 1- or to “Tapiocas da Amazônia” in the dining concourse of Terminal 2. There are many other cafés and fast-food restaurants inside the facilities, and some stay open around the clock. Additional services include pharmacies, bag wrapping, gifts and souvenir shops, Brazilian Amazon-themed outlets, tourist information, ATMs, massage lounges and Duty Free stores.

Accommodation near Manaus airport

Whether you are having a layover before flying to another city in Brazil or you want to sleep close to Manaus International airport during your trip, we recommend the Ibis Manaus Aeroporto Hotel, located less than 1 kilometre away from the passenger terminals and just a short commute from Ponta Negra Beach, the Amazonia Arena and the central Bus Station providing direct links to Manaus Port. The staff at the 24-hour reception provide top customer service in English, Spanish or Portuguese, and may assist you any time of the day or night with directions to get around and visit the Amazon rainforest, safety deposit boxes for your valuables, access to the complimentary WiFi network and private parking spaces.

This hotel close to Manaus International airport in Brazil features standard double and twin rooms with TV and fully-equipped en suite bathroom. As a confirmed guest, you are entitled to enjoy a complimentary buffet breakfast every morning -as long as you select this option during the reservation process-, as well as other amenities that you might be already acquainted with if you have stayed at a hotel belonging to the IBIS hospitality chain before.

Should you wish to continue exploring Brazil after fulfilling the dream of visiting the Amazon rainforest, check out our recommendations to travel to Rio de Janeiro as a backpacker and some good travel tips for those flying to Guarulhos International airport in Sao Paulo. The latter contains useful information if you who want to create your own combination of two lesser-known South American tourism modalities: a work trip and a city break.

Hotels with gym and how to behave in a hotel fitness center

Do you also wonder how some people manage to stay fit while traveling? Let me tell you, I once tried to carry a set of dumbbells in my hand luggage, which obviously was not a good idea, and trying to find a safe place to run or work out in a new city was by no means an easy endeavor. Luckily, more and more hotels are offering fitness centers and gym facilities on site for guests to use during their stay at a home away from home. Continue reading below to discover how to access a hotel gym, how to behave properly so as not to incur penalties or disturb other guests and everything else you should know when lifting weights at a resort or accommodation.

Hotel gym rules and etiquette

How to know if you can use the hotel gym for free during your stay

Whenever you make a hotel reservation online, it will be easy to go through the complimentary amenities offered by the accommodation and check whether its premises have a gym or not, and if you can use it at no extra cost. Also, upon receiving the confirmation of your booking via e-mail, you may consult which services are included in the nightly rate to be paid, since access to fitness facilities and breakfast, for instance, are typically among them.

If you are particularly interested in not skipping your daily workout while abroad, consider only hotels with a gym, but bear in mind that the search results page will probably display accommodations where access to the fitness center is free as well as others where you need to pay a small surcharge or additional fee to enter. When the hotel gym remains open 24 hours, paying the hourly rate will be worth it, especially when it will help you fight jet lag after a long-haul journey.

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In order to access the exercise room, you are normally required to bring your untransferable key card with you -the one that opens the door to your room, turns on the lights, etc.-, or else to identify yourself with an exclusive password. Pay attention to how many people are already working out inside, because limited capacity regulations may apply. If you plan to stay in a hotel rated with 4 or 5 stars, you may be given the possibility to hire a personal fitness trainer to coach you.

What to wear and take with you for your gym session at the hotel

As important as bringing your towel to wipe up the sweat from the gym equipment when you are done is wearing the appropriate clothing and shoes. But you already know that if you are a gym rat. If it is travel that has awakened the desire of sculpting your body and taking care of yourself, know that doing otherwise and showing up at the hotel gym with heels or uncomfortable clothes may result in slipping from a climber machine or treadmill, or twisting your knee, and in such cases you will be solely responsible for your safety. Bringing a bottle of water or isotonic drink is O.K. generally, but make sure you check the hotel policies regarding drinks and food, which is normally not allowed.

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Exercising at the hotel gym

Not being a nuisance in the hotel gym is not that hard. Simply take care of every piece of equipment you use as though it was yours. Note that theft or damage of barbells, benches or any other accessories will make you incur fines, and don’t think you are smart enough to get away with it, because there are probably surveillance cameras in the most unexpected spots.

Respect other people’s time, focus and workout and mute your phone, wear headphones, don’t interfere with their progress (no flirting, no random attempts to socialize), don’t take selfies in which strangers unwantedly appear (or even better, don’t take any pictures at all), and use only one machine or piece of equipment at a time, leaving it exactly where and as you found it.

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Trip preparation checklist

How do you prepare for a trip? Have you ever forgotten something essential to avoid trouble abroad or to travel comfortably? Experienced travelers are well acquainted with the fact that all smooth and pleasant trips have one thing in common: a thorough checklist made well in advance before traveling. But what does this list need to include? Is it valid for all destinations? It would be safe to answer “yes”, take note of our recommendations for a trip preparation checklist below and keep it handy for all your upcoming adventures. Revising it every time you start thinking about your next destination will ensure that you won’t overlook any important requirement and will get everything you need prior to your departure.

Prepare for your next travels with this vacation or trip checklist

Book your accommodation well in advance

Secure a safe place to stay during your trip as soon as possible. Bear in mind that nightly rates generally go up as your arriving date approaches. Before making a reservation, search for hotels that will cater to your needs, are close to your interests and seem to offer good value for money. Reliable hotel booking websites will let you modify or cancel your stay without penalty as long as you do it between 24 and 48 hours prior to your scheduled arrival.

Search for flights and book with the best airline covering your route

In order to find the lowest airfare with an airline operating flights to your destination, you can use a flight price comparison website. However, don’t reserve a seat until you have checked what is included in the final fare (the luggage allowance, snacks, assigned seats, etc.). In this case, the same rules of hotel booking applies: the earlier you get your flights, the better the deals.

Check whether you need a Visa, Permit or Tourist Card to enter your destination

If entering the country you plan to visit requires a travel visa, tourist card or some kind of permit, note that you should apply for your document soon, since processing visas for visitors with a foreign passport may take up to several months. Planning ahead will ensure that you will have received your permit by the time you depart.

Learn about health and vaccination requirements

Many destinations still ask travelers to show proof of their current health condition and vaccination status, and a few may still require you to quarantine for a period of time before being admitted into the territory. It is also advisable that you carry written prescriptions by a doctor if you are carrying any type of medication with you.

Purchase a travel health insurance plan

You should always buy specific medical insurance for your travels, especially when planning long stays abroad. Today, you may even find multi-country health insurance plans for international tourists and business travelers. Learn more by watching the video (text continues below).

Make sure you have suitable clothing for your trip

You might be travelling somewhere with very cold weather, to a tropical part of the earth with dry climate and high temperatures, or something in between where you will be smart enough to wear layers of clothing. Also pay attention to what you will be doing: meeting clients (or bosses), walking long distances or practising extreme sports and choose your clothes accordingly. Don’t forget your portable travel iron to look impeccabble all the time.

Keep a printed copy of your passport and plane tickets in your hand luggage

Printed copies of your documentation, plane tickets and hotel reservations will come handy if your smartphone suddenly stops working or runs out of battery. In other words, don’t rely solely on your devices for crucial steps of your trip like boarding the plane or checking in at the hotel, and take photos of your belongings inside your bags just in case they get lost.

Get cash in the local currency of your destination

Visit your bank or the bureau the change counter at your home airport to purchase foreign currency that you can use just like a local in the city you will be visiting. Think that small stores and restaurants may not accept international debit or credit cards, especially if you plan to explore non-touristy towns.

Arrange airport transfers and shuttle services before getting there

You will surely need some means of transportation to go from the airport terminal to your hotel, and from your hotel to a congress venue, for instance. For a smoother trip, book all your rides while you are still home, and print out the confirmation e-mails with your itineraries and schedules.

Put battery chargers and powerbanks in your hand and checked luggage

No matter if you travel for work or for leisure: nobody wants to miss the chance to come back home with the coolest photos and videos. When you pack your bags, put USB chargers and powerbanks in both your checked and your cabin luggage so that you can keep the battery of your digital camera and electronic devices fully charged at all times.

Download useful travel mobile apps

In order to stay informed while in transit, it would be ideal to download your airline app, as well as any other relevant mobile applications related to transport, health regulations, activities or city guides of your final destination.

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Travel in Portugal, Europe: city and beach trips

Nice weather and warm temperatures all year round, good quality of life and low cost of living are some of the main allures attracting travelers, tourists, expats and digital nomads to Portugal in Europe. What is more, it is considered to be one of the most affordable destinations in the world, and many choose it not just for a quick stop along their European travel itinerary but as a retreat or vacation that may last several months or more. Others seek to move permanently to places like the Algarve, Porto or Lisbon and so invest in holiday homes and other types of property there. In this post, we gather previous articles where we recommended accommodation in the aforementioned Portuguese cities. If you would like to visit and explore potential places to live close to the Atlantic Ocean, scroll down and pick your favorite.

Where to stay on your trip to Porto, Portugal

There are many reasons why you might have already heard about the second largest city in Portugal: Porto –or Oporto. Perhaps you ticked Lisbon off your bucket list some time ago and your traveller friends have started prompting you to go up north and visit Porto, or you are a football fan already acquainted with Porto FC. If you are wine lover, you may be attracted to this destination for its worldwide-popular cellars and tasting tours, or because it is home to a UNESCO World Heritage Site and part of the Portuguese path of the Way of St. James if you enjoy historical landmarks or plan to complete the Camino. Even sea lovers can find their own little piece of paradise in Porto, since its westernmost area is bathed by the Atlantic Ocean. Click on our pin below for suggested hotels and accommodation.

Holiday apartments in the Algarve, Portugal

There is no need for you to be a surfer to fall in love with the Algarve in Portugal: this increasingly popular destination is attracting more and more travellers every year, especially those who seek a peaceful retreat by the sea, amazing landscapes and fine cuisine. Algarve is the region occupying the most southern section of the Portuguese territory, served by Faro airport and well-connected throughout by an effective bus network. Its sunny weather and mild temperatures all year round make it an optimal place for winter escapes and summer trips alike. Whether you are travelling solo, with friends or family, here you can find the perfect accommodation in Algarve.

Hotels in Lisbon (Lisboa), Portugal

When visiting Lisboa, travellers get the chance to tick off some of Europe’s most instagrammable landmarks on anyone’s bucket list: St. George’s Castle, the Alfama neighbourhood, the Praça do Comercio, the Belem tower, the Monastery of St. Jerome, the Oriente railway station and the Vasco da Gama bridge. Accomplishing this sightseeing tour in just a couple of days is even possible if they stay in downtown Lisbon and get around by bus, underground or tram, as the city centre is really well connected to these points by the different transportation networks and Portuguese travel cards are quite inexpensive. Our recommended hotels below are all within short walking distance or very well connected by public transportation to the most beautiful and lively spots in this city of Portugal, Europe.

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Travel without cash by getting a prepaid money card at the airport

Do you find carrying large amounts of money in cash while travelling somewhat risky? If you would rather avoid using your credit card abroad, purchasing a prepaid travel card that functions just as a regular debit one might be a wise decision to make, and all the more so when it won’t be linked to your bank account. This way, you will only use the money you have estimated for your travel expenses, keeping the rest safe and untouchable back home, without the application of any fees or commissions. Those who travel frequently for either work or leisure choose this solution not only due to safety and privacy concerns, but also because it is highly convenient in terms of organisation as well as time-saving.

The most trusted prepaid travel cards

While travellers in the USA have a whole network of ReadyCard kiosks where they can convert their cash into a travel money prepaid card at the airport before their departure or upon arrival, those on long-haul journeys towards destinations overseas can take advantage of products like the Travelex prepaid card, offering high flexibility in terms of currency exchange rates and other perks among which we count commission-free ATM withdrawals while abroad and the integration of contactless technology.

How to get a prepaid card and travel without cash in the USA

If you are passing through a US airport like Memphis International, Denver or San Diego, you will have the opportunity to convert part of your cash into a prepaid travel money card. Simply head over to a ReadyCard kiosk and purchase your card (an issuance fee of 5 USD applies) and top it up with the amount of money you wish to use this way. The system, similar to that of an ATM, will guide you through the different stages of the process until you get your prepaid card for travelling and a receipt. You might be asked to make a phone call as last step to activate your PIN number, but as soon as it gets activated, you will be able to start making payments.

The ReadyCard comes in two modalities: the Instant type and the Rechargeable one. The former is ideal for short, occasional trips since you will have the freedom to spend your money until the card is “empty” without providing personal data that could compromise the security of your bank account; however, you won’t be able to withdraw cash from ATMs during your trip. On the contrary, the latter allows you to recharge it on subsequent occasions if your stays abroad are frequent or you want to extend the duration of your adventure, plus it offers extra possibilities like using it in ATMs.

The Travelex prepaid card for travelling

As far as currency exchange services are concerned, it is widely known that travellers worldwide trust the Travelex company. Boasting presence in airports across the world, their offices are another place you can turn to in order to get a travel money prepaid card to use in your international travels, although they also give you the chance to submit an online application and get it on the mail before your departure date. Alternatively, you may collect your travel card at their locations in large hubs like London Heathrow up to four hours before boarding.

The advantages offered by the Travelex money card include the deposit of cash in different currencies (Japanese yens, Canadian dollars, Australian dollars, British pounds or Euros, for example), the independence from the rest of your accounts, free-commission money withdrawals while overseas and contactless technology.

Do we recommend these cards?

They are undoubtedly a convenient and safe method to manage your money while travelling, when your attention needs to be focused on too many aspects of the journey already, even if you are on a holiday trip. Although the majority of travel prepaid cards can be used even for online purchases, it is advisable to keep them for daily travel expenses. Bear in mind that, to make hotel reservations and book services, companies need to verify and contrast your personal info, and not having a source to do so might lead to unwanted cancellations. Apart from that, a travel money prepaid card will make your journey easier, helping you save precious time and giving you peace of mind.

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How to avoid being pickpocketed when you travel

“Do not leave your baggage unattended” seems like a pretty simple and effective rule to abide by, but in practice, preventing your bags and money from being stolen at the airport or hotel when you travel implies far more than just that. In this post, we will revise key recommendations that might help you avoid the misfortune of being pickpocketed while navigating your way through international terminals, commuting to your hotel or enjoying your holiday trip. Continue reading to learn more about how to become a cautious traveller.

Staying safe in airports

Generally, when we are at the airport we are carrying many valuable things with us: our passport and documents, money, credit cards and even medication. In this part of the journey we do not have much choice as we need to have them handy while in transit to go across borders, pay for travel services or because there is no place where we can leave them during this interval. This is precisely why we should stay more alert than ever at the public departures zones and the arrivals hall of an airport -both of them areas that can be accessed by anyone-, but also in the departures concourses after security, where we tend to be more relaxed and are more prone to distractions.

How to avoid being stolen at the airport

A departing traveller is usually worrying about the possible long queues, or that they might have to pay for excess baggage, or whether they will be able to clear security and get to their gate in time for boarding. For many, this is a stressful experience and so they easily lose sight of their precious belongings, which brings us to the main commandment of the cautious traveller: be it that you are talking to the check-in agent, saying goodbye to a relative or shopping at the duty free, your bag must be in front of you and within sight at all times.

The zips and pockets should ideally be against your body and never at the back or where other people can access them faster than you. It would also be wise not to keep all your cash in just one purse, but to distribute it between different compartments of your hand luggage, and even better if you can come up with places where nobody would ever check.

Travellers tend to be eager to meet new people, yet we should bear in mind that –unfortunately- not every approach is made with good intentions. Be extra careful when a stranger asks you for help in the public zone of an international airport; sometimes they make you focus your attention on something so that a third party can rob you without your noticing. The same applies when something striking happens in front of you out of the blue: it might be staged for the sole purpose of pickpocketing.

Do not give away unnecessary information

The time you spend in transit is definitely not the occasion to boast about your luxury clothing or expensive jewellery, since this will attract the attention of robbers, who will immediately identify you as a target. Instead, when you are preparing for your trip, make sure you store every item that may reveal a higher socioeconomic status –even those that are simply deceiving because they are actually replicas- in a secure place inside your checked or carry-on luggage.

At the car rental counter, when you hire private shuttle services and on your commute towards the hotel, you should only provide the personal information that is strictly necessary to get you to your place to the staff and/or driver, with special emphasis on the exact address where you will be staying, for how long or the times of the day when you will be away. The less everybody knows, the better.

How to avoid having your things stolen at the hotel

In order to explore a new city or attend business appointments during our trip, often times we leave the money we won’t use that day and other valuable belongings inside our hotel room, as we tend to consider it a secure place. However, even when the hotel chain is a widely trusted one, their staff might not always be as professional as they should.

Under no circumstance should you put credit cards or jewellery inside the bags that you will leave in the hotel room during the day, and as for the in-room safe, use common sense: is it bolted to the cupboard or can it be taken away? Can you set your own security code? Sadly, in-room safety deposit boxes have proven to be relatively easy to open in spite of that, so in this case you are advised to get a portable safe lock for greater peace of mind.

If you resolve to carry your money and cards with you while out in the city or at the beach, put the recommendations above into practice and enjoy your trip. Remember that there is no need for you to travel in constant fear of being robbed or get obsessed about it; on the contrary, if you develop the skill to be able to stay alert and enjoy at the same time, a nice feeling of safety and self-confidence will become part of every journey.

Hotels in Manchester city centre, England

Without a doubt, Manchester is an unmissable destination in your UK tour. Perhaps you are taking a business trip to the city, or maybe you just want to roam the streets, ready to marvel at the architecture, museums and cosy local cafés you encounter. The old warehouses, the canals, the Chinatown district, Manchester Cathedral, the Imperial War Museum and Albert Square –to mention but a few attractions- have already made thousands of visitors fall in love with the stories within its walls. However, one might as well say that football lovers are the ones who enjoy Manchester the most, having the chance of going inside Old Trafford Stadium (the historic home of Manchester United team), taking a fan tour and complementing the experience with a visit to the National Football Museum.

Find a hotel in Manchester city centre

In view of the above, staying in a hotel in Manchester city centre is strongly recommended, as commuting between different sites of interest, art galleries, restaurants and shopping areas can be done smoothly by bus, tram or train. If you are arriving by air to this part of England, know that only a short train journey (of about 20 minutes) separates the downtown from Manchester airport: you must take the Skylink to the airport’s railway station first and then hop on a Northern Rail or Transpennine Express train towards Manchester Picadilly Station. Find some recommended accommodation options below and choose the one that best suits your interests and travel budget.

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Chesters hotel near Old Trafford in Manchester

This 3-star hotel & restaurant is located just a short stroll from Old Trafford Stadium in Manchester, which makes it ideal for football lovers who visit England. The city centre is 3 kilometres away with excellent public transport connections to and from the accommodation. The rooms, which are cleaned daily, may be twin or double and include en suite bathroom, TV and coffee maker.

Guests are entitled to enjoy a complimentary breakfast buffet displaying a wide range of choices: continental, full English, full Irish, vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free. There are free parking spaces available and WiFi access in the public zones of the facilities. Additionally, the multilingual staff of the Chesters will gladly assist you in the booking and arrangement of meeting rooms for events. Check availability and nightly rates for this accommodation next to Old Trafford.

Jurys Inn hotel in Manchester city centre

This accommodation in Manchester is conveniently located 1 kilometre from Picadilly Station and right opposite the Manchester Convention Centre, meaning that guests can walk to St. Peter’s Square, a couple of blocks away. In order to cater to the needs of business travellers, the establishment offers 265 twin, double and triple rooms that can be standard, superior or executive, all of them featuring extra large comfortable beds. They also have private bathroom, work desk, air conditioning, coffee maker and room service.

Aside from the complimentary daily buffet breakfast, with an array of different options that can be adapted to specific dietary needs and lifestyles, the Jurys Inn surprises guests with special features such as Costa Coffee served at the bar, express check-in and check-out, free WiFi internet in the entire premises, paid laundry and dry-cleaning. Furthermore, while staying here you will be able to experience the city’s nightlife at the many local bars in the vicinity. Book your accommodation in central Manchester.

The Renaissance Manchester city centre

This one is a 4-star hotel near Blackfriars Bridge in Manchester. Guests can walk to Manchester Victoria Station, the National Football Museum, the popular high-end shopping road known as King Street and some shopping malls. What is more, if you travel to Great Britain during the Christmas season, you will get the chance to visit the Christmas market as well if you stay here, since the area is famous for its markets and restaurants. The airport stands 13,7 kilometres away.

As a member of the worldwide-renowned luxury hotel brand, it provides ample deluxe rooms and suites with spectacular city views and private bathrooms, 24-hour room service, free WiFi all throughout the building, an onsite restaurant including kids meals and special dietary options in the menu, private parking, safety deposit boxes and other guests services that may imply the payment of a surcharge. The multilingual staff has been trained to assist you at all times. Make your reservation for this hotel in central Manchester.

Official English language certificates to work and study abroad