The Terminal

By | Category: Travel tips & opinions

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Birmingham
Forget dark, satanic mills and concrete flyovers. England’s second city (and one with more canals than Venice) is home to Birmingham International Airport – your ticket to a brilliant break! The airport – which is currently celebrating its 70th anniversary – is the UK’s fifth largest airport and, owing to its enviable position (Birmingham is slap bang in the heart of England), easy to reach be it by road or rail.
Craving some culture? Plump for a city break; there are flights from Birmingham to virtually every European city imaginable. Classic city breaks – step forward Paris and Prague – never date, but for full holiday bragging rights try Tallinn (this season’s hot shot) or Berlin.
If the above all sounds a tad too highbrow, you can fly from Birmingham to the Bahamas or Barbados where you can plonk your towel on sand whiter than a dentist’s chair for some serious r&r – now that sounds good to us…

Bristol
Stat fans maybe curious to know that Bristol International Airport (so called since 1997), has one of the shortest international airport runways in the country at 2,011 meters. The rest of us will be more interested to hear that from the airport, which is located 8 miles outside Bristol city centre, we can catch flights to Amsterdam, Athens, Barcelona, Paris and other popular destinations.
Sure, Bristol is worth a browse. After all travel specialists Lonely Planet, did declare it to be ‘south western England’s largest and coolest city’ and the SS Great Britain (Britain’s biggest ship when it was launched in 1843) and Clifton Village – a pretty Georgian part of town – are both pretty fab.
However anyone with a brain is not in Bristol – they’re in the Balearics. For while many are settling for stay-cations (which have become so mainstream that they’re now in the dictionary), here at On the Beach we prefer a real vacation. If like us, you want to travel, check out our affordable flight options from Bristol airport. We’re willing to bet that when you’re having fun in Fuerteventura or sunning yourself in Spain for less than you’d spend in a week in Blighty, you’ll agree: stay-cations aren’t such a smart choice after all.

Cardiff

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Around two million passengers pass through Cardiff airport every year and for good reason; it’s the only airport in Wales offering international flights. So regardless of where you live in Wales and where in the world you want to holiday, we reckon you’ll be flying out from the Welsh capital.
And it’s not a bad option by any means; following a £7 million refurbishment in 2006, Cardiff International Airport certainly looks the part. Plus not only does it have style, it also has substance; in the last six years, Cardiff has twice been voted one of the Top 10 UK Airports in the Telegraph Travel Awards.There are flights from this award-winning airport to all the top travel hotspots. Alicante and Amsterdam are the most popular options but for something a bit more exotic but nonetheless manageable – exactly what a holiday should be – try the USA and Caribbean.

Edinburgh
Edinburgh airport is flying high. Case in point? Budget airline Ryan air increased flights from Edinburgh despite removing routes from other UL aviation hubs. All of which means that if you have decided to escape to sunnier climes (a decision that makes sense given the arctic weather conditions soggy summer), Edinburgh is as good an airport as any from which to depart to your destination du jour.
Cash poor? Panic not. You can beat the recession by flying at our lowest fares to exciting winter sun destinations. Egypt is always a winner – and we have flights to no fewer than five Egyptian ‘hot spots’ including sun soaked Sharm el Sheikh. Morocco can’t quite compete with Egypt’s heat; nonetheless you can still top up the tan sun by flying from Edinburgh to the exotic beach resort of Agadir. Then of course, there are the Canary Islands – the top winter sun destinations for Brits and a manageable four hour flight ride away…

Gatwick

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Opened in 1958, Gatwick is the UK’s second largest airport (and the eighth largest in Europe) so if you’re heading off on your hols, there’s a good chance you will be jetting out from good old Gatwick.
It’s a decision that makes sense: Heathrow may have hogged the headlines in recent years but it’s Gatwick that has walked away with the best airport award at the Travel Weekly Globe Awards on more occasions.
On the food front, there’s Apostrophe, Eat, Frankie and Benny’s, Garfunkels (don’t knock it until you’ve tried it), the ubiquitous McDonalds and many more but why not start your holiday in style at swanky seafood bar Caviar House? Good retail therapy is another of Gatwick’s draws. Along with the usuals (that’s you Boots, Books etc and The Body Shop), there’s a Harrods, a Goldsmiths  and – our favourite – an All Saints, which sells some of the coolest clobber around for both guys and gals.

Glasgow
Edinburgh may be the capital of Scotland but Glasgow is the country’s capital of cool (branding itself ‘Scotland with style’), which helps explain why more jet setters use Glasgow Airport – 8.1 million each year or an average of 22,100 passengers per day if we want to be specific – than Edinburgh.
People flock to Glasgow not for castles and kilts, but for cocktails and cuisine and this is evident at the airport too. Bars like Bargo, Drum and Monkey and J&R Tennent Bar boast a lively scene – and a fully stocked bar.
Gourmet options aside, Glasgow is – as you would expect – a seriously good looking airport (recent developments include a £10 million international pier extension, and the first phase of a £31 million terminal extension and there are plans for further refurbishment plus a new rail link by 2013).

For the low-down on six more UK airports, log onto the CD-Traveller website tomorrow

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