Christmas is now a distant memory and the decorations have come down this weekend after twelfth night. Summer, if it ever comes, is a long way off and we have the dark and cold months of February to survive. Already, those people who are prone to SAD syndrome are starting to feel down and most people, given the chance, would love to escape to a warmer destination. The problem is that Christmas is an expensive time, so tight budgets often mean that winter breaks remain a pipe dream.
It’s still possible to get away from the cold and the rain and not break the bank as long as you follow some simple rules;
The main rule for getting a cheap deal is not to go where the holiday companies expect you to. The evergreen popularity of the Canaries for winter breaks mean that prices are kept artificially high but look for the less popular winter destinations and you can still get a cheap break and a high probability of some warm winter sun. £65 will get you a return flight to Malaga at the end of January. For the same date you can fly to Cyprus for £100, Malta for £110 and Sicily for £125.
At that time of year Malaga will have six hours of sunshine a day and temperatures around 17C on average, Cyprus will offer you the same temperature but an hour extra sun each day whilst Malta has the same sunshine as Malaga but just a degree cooler.
Pick the time of day right and you’ll be able to get a gentle tan without burning and at least the beaches won’t be crowded.
Malaga and Cyprus both have the additional benefit in January of allowing you to access skiing within two hours of your resort; Cyprus in the Troodos and Malaga in the Sierra Nevada. Whilst in the summer, seeing other parts of your holiday destination can be expensive with excursions or paying peak season car hire, you’ll find that in January, car hire in Malaga
costs from under £3 a day whilst Paphos car hire
is under £5 a day.
Eating out can also be a lot cheaper in the winter and many restaurants offer special deals to attract the limited number of tourists. Meal prices in both countries can start from as little as £7 per person for a set menu meal.
Doing the maths you’ll soon see that a great winter break with car hire and some delicious meals out will set you back possible as little as £150 each for a week including accommodation and flights. So perhaps forego that dress or pair of shoes in the sales and instead make yourself feel a lot better with a warming winter break.