Save Money, Transport, Travel, Travel

Since the withdrawal of the Tesco Clubcard points boost a couple of years ago I’ve been left stranded as to what to do with my mountain of points.

I’ve over £200 worth at the time of writing and with many due to expire in the coming months I’m working out where and when to spend my points to ensure maximum value. 

Unlike dining out, one thing Helen and I do a lot is travel. Whether it be in the UK or abroad we’re always heading somewhere. Which is why I was so excited to find that Tesco Clubcard has given customers the ability to convert vouchers into credit for the UK’s leading inter-city budget coach service, Megabus.



Exchanging your Tesco Clubcard points for credit to spend on Megabus isn’t the best value for money. In fact, they’ll only double you’re money. Alternatively, some restaurants will offer up to four times the voucher in credit.

However, we we’re looking to take this journey regardless and Megabus was already the cheapest option. So, in this scenario we figured – why not…


Already in the process of booking our trip. I was really pleased to get our voucher delivered to our email instantly allowing us to continue booking our trip.

The vouchers are rounded. So while our booking came to £5.40 I could only use £2.50 to convert into a voucher for £5.00. Which did mean we had to pay £0.40. Sure, it’s not a huge deal but it’s certainly worth knowing.

Entering the code that Tesco emailed me couldn’t be made easier thanks to a dedicated button for Tesco Clubcard Token on the payment processing page on Megabus.com
 



All you have to do is enter a couple of details (I assume this is for security) and the voucher will be dedicated from your total amount. 


In conclusion, while this isn’t the best value for Tesco Clubcard points. It is a fantastic way to cut the costs of you’re domestic travel across the UK.

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Transport, Travel

We recently came back from our digital nomad adventure, we were flying from Hamburg to Manchester with Ryanair. Though we had flown with Ryanair multiple times previously we had never really experienced a journey quite like it.




Baggage

The baggage restrictions within Ryanair are what can be expected from most European budget airlines with a maximum size of; 55cm x 40cm x 20cm for a cabin bag. This for us was no issue as we had packed light and managed to fit our belongings into a 20l backpack. 


Learn more about the best hand luggage and how to pack into hand luggage
.

Booking & Check – In

As expected while going through the booking process there can be many hoops to jump through, insurance? no thank you, priority boarding? no thank you and so you get the picture. 

We checked in online through the website and had more hoops to jump through which was starting to get ridiculous. Generally, budget airlines have all these added things to make the money but I found this frustrating. 

While we have been lucky in the past and always ended up sat together without paying, this time was different. We had to pay a minimum of £2 each to sit together, while this may not be much it is frustrating. We didn’t pay and ended up sat 3 rows apart, while on the aircraft I noticed that we weren’t the only pairing sat apart. Many families including those with young children were sat away from their parents or family members. 



While we didn’t have children and don’t mind sitting apart for short flights it has become an increasing worry that children and family members are being sat away from each other. For me, there seems no logic on splitting up bookings whether children are involved or not. Many now believe this is a further push to create extra funds for the company and so people are shopping elsewhere for their flights.

 

The Flight

The flight was on-time, in fact, we managed to land into Manchester early. The drinks service was basic, but on a short haul flight, I’m never overly fussed by this. 

While there was no food service on the flight they do offer up a trolley of snacks but as the prices can be £1 for a chocolate bar and £2 for a bottle of coke we generally take our own on board.



The entire flight is an economy flight, the interior is as can be expected. Clean, relatively comfortable, but very, very basic. The leg room was tight and that is coming from someone who is quite short, I wouldn’t have wanted to be any taller or bigger as I would find it an uncomfortable flight.


Unfortunatly, despite all of this we would still fly Ryanair again. However, I’ll continue to refuse to pay for sitting together or any of the additional features they try and charge us for.

As always I would love to know what you think, have you flown Ryanair and experienced the same problem or have you always paid for your seats together. Let me know in the comments below what you think of Ryanair.

We recommend searching and booking for your budget flight with Ryanair for free with the travel fare aggregator website SkyScanner. This will allow you to find the cheapest dates for your destination.

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Spend Money, Transport, Travel

Our return back to the UK took an unexpected turn when we arrived back to Manchester airport to find that National Rail wanted upwards of £50.00 for the 1 hour train journey to Leeds. Shocked by the pricing (especially after two months on public transport within Europe and paying just £8 for a flight from Germany to the UK) we decided to look at our alternatives.


Our solution was National Express. Coming in at just £17 for the two of us (including booking fee) and taking just one hour longer than the train journey we saw it as a no brainer. However, having not been on a coach service within the UK for the best part of a decade, how were we going to find it?




Travel Details

H: Manchester Airport, England

To: Leeds Bus Station, England

Journey Duration: 2 hours 20 minutes

Price Per Adult: £8.95

Booking

As we booked our transport very much last minute, we relied on the mobile version of the National Express website for booking. Despite there being a National Express office at Manchester Airport they were unable to match the price we’d been quoted online.

Considering we were booking on a small screen, and in a rather short time period under stressful conditions we found the website very easy to use. If it’s that easy on the mobile version of the website I can’t begin to imagine how simple it is to do online via a laptop or PC.

Within minutes of paying for our booking we we’re emailed our tickets and ready to board our scheduled coach. 

Seating And Comfort

We managed to board and get the front two seats on the bus – usually reserved for those in a wheel chair however none were onboard today. This provided us with A LOT of extra legroom. Perfect for the awkwardly sized baggage we had.


The benefits of being in the front seat is being able to see clearly out of the front of the coach. As I occasionally suffer from travel sickness this helped a lot.


All the seats on the coach we’re covered in leather with plenty of padding and cushioning around the head. Sitting in these for more than two hours certainly wasn’t a problem…



Service

The service onboard was fantastic. Aside from the free onboard WiFi, National Express offers a complimentary entertainment service. You can use this free using your WiFi enabled device (iPad, SmartPhone, Laptop)


The choice in viewing was outstanding and included TV shows, movies and magazines. Considering this is complimentary I was left shocked, but highly impressed.


Helen and I opted to start planning our next getaway by reading the latest Lonely Planet magazine using my laptop. Navigation was straight forward and reading was a pleasure.



Value For Money

Considering National Rail wanted a shocking three times the amount for the same journey (the only difference being the mode of transport and an hour) I’d say National Express is fantastic value for money.

The service was prompt, the seats were comfortable and the added extras MADE this journey. I will certainly be looking to travel with National Express again in the near future.

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Spend Money, Transport, Travel

We recently visited Amsterdam for the first time to attend the Youtube conference VidCon. Another first on our trip to Amsterdam was our flight with EasyJet. Despite previously staying in the EasyHotels (under the same parent company) in London. We’d actually never flown this budget (and bright orange) airline.



So, how did the airline compare to others? Let’s find out…

Baggage

The baggage restrictions within EasyJet are what can be expected from most European budget airlines with a maximum size of; 56 x 45 x 25cm.

Learn more about the best hand luggage and how to pack into hand luggage.

Booking & Check-In

Like many European budget airlines, while the process of booking is simple. You do have a few hoops to jump through. No, I don’t want insurance. No, I don’t want priority boarding. No, I don’t…. Yes, you get the idea. 

As for check-in, on both occasions I did it on the mobile application using my iPhone.


We had zero problems using the boarding cards for two people on one phone at the airport or while boarding. EasyJet work on a seat allocation programme and we managed to get seats together both on the outward and return journey. With a row to ourselves, therefore a seat spare in the middle on the return – bonus!

The Flight

Both the outgoing and inbound flight was on-time, in fact we managed to land into Amsterdam 15 minutes early. The drinks service was basic, but on a short haul flight I’m never overly fussed by this.

Unfortunatly, on the food and drink front we can’t comment. No in-flight meals have been served on the flight and we decided against purchasing anything from the trolly. As for the pricing, it’s what can be expected when compared to other European budget airlines. (£1 for a chocolate bar, £2 for a bottle of coke etc.)
 

The entire flight is an economy flight, the interior is as can be expected. Clean, relatively comfortable, but very, very basic. 


So, would I fly with EasyJet again? Sure! I’ve absolutely nothing to complain about here. Everything was above average from what I’d expect from a budget airline. However, I wouldn’t choose them specifically over any other budget airline – I’d still just book the cheapest.

As always, I’d love to know what you think of budget airline EasyJet? Have you flown with them before? Let me know in the comments below.

We recommend searching and booking for your budget flight with EasyJet for free with the travel fare aggregator website SkyScanner. This will allow you to find the cheapest dates for your destination.

 
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Transport, Travel

If you have been following us, you will know we have been travelling Europe on our digital nomad adventure, starting in Bulgaria and working our way back to England. While on our travels we have used many different types of coaches and buses none of which were big brands or names until we came across Regiojet. 

We were travelling from Budapest, Hungary to Bratislava, Slovakia. We spent 5 nights in Budapest and to save money we stayed in a shared dorm in a hostel. If you are looking to visit and save money check out my review


Travel Details

From: Budapest, Hungary

To: Bratislava, Slovakia

Journey Duration: 3 hours 

Price Per Adult: £8.78 (based on conversion rates at present time)

Booking

Regiojet is mostly online and is simple to use, if using the comparison site GoEuro.com once you select your ticket you will transfer over to the Regiojet site. Booking was simple and easy especially when trying to compare the best way to travel, if you are like you, you will want to save money where you can. Once you have booked and payment has gone through you will receive an email with your tickets attached. 


Regiojet also has a mobile app if you prefer to use that than having to search for the email as you board the bus. 



Seating And Comfort

On boarding, the attendant will check your ticket and you will either have a seat number on your ticket or will be given one. The seats are comfortable and have plenty of leg room, the seat also has an above compartment for small hand luggage, a fold away tray and seat pocket.



The numbers above the seats were a little tricky to work out as they were a little miss aligned but worked out in the end.  There was plenty of space to get comfortable for long journeys as well as a curtain for blocking out the sun. 

Service

Upon boarding the attendant came across as quite frustrated and stern, this, unfortunately, carried on throughout the journey even with her best efforts to do her job and it was a little off putting. However, this would not stop me using the company again as it was great. There were snacks available to buy as the attendant came around and were also offered a complimentary hot drink or water. 

As we were the first stop there was no need for us to hear of any stops or additional information. There was a toilet available on board to use, there was complimentary wifi on board but was only available within the borders of Bratislava. 

 

Value For Money

We booked our tickets within days of leaving Budapest so we could have been paying much more, we found the tickets through the comparison site and got the best deal. This led us to Regiojet being the best price for the time we needed to arrive in Bratislava, the prices vary and can be cheaper for early morning or out of peak season. 

There wasn’t much you can fault with the service of Regiojet and company itself. If you were to ask me if I would use this service and company again I would say yes. I wouldn’t like to have to take a much longer journey as the freedom to get snacks from the front and move from your seat was a little frowned upon, but otherwise, I would use this service in the future. 

So there you have it, my review on Regiojet. The easiest and quickest way to book your trip with Regiojet is with GoEuro. Have you travelled with Regiojet? What were your experiences like? Let me know in the comments below.

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Transport, Travel

While we have been travelling around on our digital nomad adventure, we found the cheapest and most popular mode of transport was using coach or bus. We were looking to get from Vienna, Austria to Prague, Czech Republic.




We used a service called Flixbus. While we had used many different bus services while travelling this was our first trip with Flixbus, here is how we got on.

Travel Details

From: Vienna, Austria

To: Prague, Czech Republic

Journey Duration: 4 hours 20 minutes

Price Per Adult: £13.12 (based on conversion rates at present time)

Booking

Flixbus is mainly online and tickets can be bought from their website or mobile app. We found our tickets through a travel comparison site GoEuro.com showing us the best deals (because if you are like me you will want the best deal) and times for our selected journey. The booking was easy and you will receive an email straight away with an attached document (your ticket).

You can also download their mobile app and import your ticket to save scrolling through emails when boarding. The driver will scan your ticket and take any large luggage to the luggage hold for you. 



Seating And Comfort

Once 0n board you can sit anywhere on the bus as seats aren’t assigned, the seats are comfortable and come with a foot rest, tray and pocket to store items.


The overhead luggage rack is a little snug but maybe our fat backpacks were too full to fit. The seats came with an option to recline back without disturbing the person behind you, there is plenty of legroom and space to get comfortable.

Service

We encountered no issues with the service, within our 4-5 hour journey we were informed by the driver of arriving at a location if you weren’t travelling until the end stop and of a break for toilets and snacks. As we were leaving Vienna at 3 pm, the bus journey was travelling to Berlin as its final stop and so stopped for the long haul passengers to get a hot meal and food for the road. 

There was a second driver,  that you could purchase snacks from though we didn’t require this particular service, along with the onboard toilet. There was a complimentary wifi on board, not the greatest but helpful to get a little work done or just browse the internet.

 

Value For Money

We booked last minute and when I say last minute, it was the night before we were due to leave. We found the prices through a comparison site and that is what led us to Flixbus, the prices vary throughout the year and even can be found cheaper travelling very early morning.

There isn’t much you can fault with the service and company itself. If you were to ask me if I would use this company again, yes I would. I wouldn’t want to take a journey longer than 5 or 6 hours as I get bored, but otherwise, I would use Flixbus again.

There you have it, my review of Flixbus. The easiest and quickest way of booking your coach journey with FlixBus is through the coach comparison website GoEuro. In the meantime be sure to let me know whether have you travelled with Flixbus? and what your experience was like? in the comments below.

2

Transport, Travel

When we started our digital nomad journey, it was all about math. With such a small daily budget, we needed to fly from an airport with great public transport links, with an super cheap airline, to a VERY affordable destination.

It took hours days of research, but ultimately we ended up flying from Doncaster to Sofia, Bulgaria with an airline I’d previously never heard of; Wizz Air. 




With the one-way flight coming in at just £8 each I like most people was sceptical as to the service offering. 

Baggage

The first thing we noticed about budget airline Wizz Air was the strange baggage restrictions. Unlike similar budget airlines a small suitcase wasn’t free and instead came at an additional cost. In fact the only complimentary baggage we were allowed as part of our ticket was a small bag up to the size of a 20l backpack.

Let the challenge commence…



As this is so different from similar European budget airlines it’s certainly something to look out for. An while I believe a 20l backpack is achievable (I mean there’s 2 months of stuff in each of those backpacks including; a drone, 2 cameras, 2 go pros, 2 Macbook pros, charges and clothes) it’s certainly not for everyone.



Discount Club

Thanks to such a discount, and a wide variety of flights across Europe we decided to sign up for Wizz Air’s discount club. 
Budget Airline Wizz Air
Having never previously flown with the airline it was safe to say this was a risk. However, based on the savings of the base rate of the flight alone should we fly with Wizz Air three times (one way) in the next 12 months we’d likely be in profit.

Considering I’m writing this after two one way flights with budget airline Wizz Air in the space of 6 weeks, I’d say we’re not doing too bad.

Here’s just a quick example as to the savings that can be achieved with the Wizz Air discount club;


While the Wizz Air loyalty club does make you loyal to the budget airline, I wouldn’t see that as a bad thing. Especially if you’re regularly taking a journey that is offered by Wizz Air. In fact in that instance, I could easily see you saving more than £100!

The discount club isn’t going to be for everyone, for me it’s more about maximising the discount over the twelve month period of the membership. So, if you’re just visiting Europe for a month it’s probably not going to be worthwhile.

Booking & Check-In

Like many European budget airlines, while the process of booking is simple. You do have a few hoops to jump through. No, I don’t want insurance. No, I don’t want priority boarding. No, I don’t…. Yes, you get the idea. 

As for check-in, on both occations I did it on the mobile application using my iPhone. The process couldn’t have been easier. An thanks to being a discount club member the application saves my details making the proccess even more straight forward.

We had zero problems using the boarding cards for two people on one phone at the airport or while boarding. An despite not booking seats together, and checking in rather late we managed to get seats next to each other on both occasions. 

 

The Flight

As I mentioned earlier in the post at the time of writing we’ve actually been on two flights with Wizz Air. The first, Doncaster, England to Sofia, Bulgaria and then an additional flight from Bucharest, Romania to Budapest, Hungary

This additional experience allows for a more comprehensive review.

Firstly. Punctuality, our first flight took off and landed on-time. However, our second departed over two hours late due to the weather in Budapest (this impacted the arrival time of the flight into Bucharest). This is unfortunatly out of the hands of the staff, however you could clearly see that they we’re doing all they could to ensure they made up for the delay. 
 

The entire flight is an economy flight, the interior is as can be expected. Clean, relatively comfortable, but very, very basic. Although one unusual feature I found was the height and structure of the tray. It was different to anything I’d previously experienced. It didn’t line up with my body what so ever, meaning I had to reach to type on my laptop. This isn’t necessary a bad thing, just a weird observation


Finally, the food. On this we unfortunatly can’t comment. No in-flight meals have been served on the flight and due to budget constraints we’ve not purchased anything from the trolly. As for the pricing, it’s what can be expected when compared to other European budget airlines. (£1 for a chocolate bar, £2 for a alcoholic drink)


As whether I would continue flying with budget airline Wizz Air. I assume you’ve gathered by now, the answer to that question is – Yes. I’d never want to fly with them on a flight longer than four hours, but for any duration less than that the value for money is fantastic. 

As always, I’d love to know what you think of budget airline Wizz Air? Have you flown with them before? Let me know in the comments below. 

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Transport, Travel

If you’ve been watching our daily vlogs then you’ll have seen that I recently visited Orlando, Florida with my girlfriend Helen, my brother and my elderly parents. This is the first time we’ve taken a ‘family trip’ in over a decade and the first time my parent’s have ever flown long haul.





I wanted every part of the trip to run smoothly, which is exactly why I chose to test out the meet and greet services offered by www.looking4parking.com.

Booking Process

The booking process was simple and straight forward. All I had to do was simply enter the details of our journey, and select to retrieve a quote.

Looking4parking Review
The filtering made it simple for me to search for meet and greet parking only, with the search results being then organised by cheapest first.

Looking4Parking

Departure

Once we had booked our meet and greet parking we received a confirmation email. This outlined everything we needed to do on our day of travel.

This is what we had to do. What you might have to do will vary depending on airport and company etc. So be sure to check before you travel.

15 minutes away from arriving at the airport, we needed to contact the meet and greet desk. I confirmed our booking, and where we were meeting the representative (outside our terminal departures). Once we arrived we had a short wait until the representative arrived.

We removed our bags from the car, exchanged keys and that was it. Off we went.

As we were right next to the departures entrance there was no need for a shuttle bus or a long walk.



Arrivals

After the most wonderful time in Orlando, Florida we arrived back to Manchester airport. It was 8am and we’d been travelling for the best part of 13 hours. 

Tired and jet lagged. All we needed to do was ring the customer service number once we had collected our bags and our car would be waiting for us along with the representative just 10 minutes later – that left us with just enough time to get a Greggs breakfast roll.


Conclusion

Looking4Parking made finding the right airport parking for us quick, simple and straight forward. I would certainly use it again – not just for meet and greet parking but for the standard budget parking Helen and I use when travelling. 


Disclaimer: Looking4Parking gave me this service for free in return for this review. This review as always is honest, and my own opinion and has no way been influenced by this. I would not review any product or service that I do not 100% believe in. 

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