Additional Information

Travel Made Easy

After years of travelling both for work and pleasure, prior to, and since having children - I have learned how to make travel much easier for myself and the family.

Therefore…

Additionally in the houses with private pool in Medina Sidonia, along with villas Casa Lucia and Vista Vejer in Santa Lucia; and the villas called El Cortijo, Las Piedras and Casa Luz in El Palmar we can offer these additional services for a small extra charge:

Childrens Pack:

Selection of DVD’s, toys and games; bottle sterliser, baby bath, changing mat, potty, plastic cutlery & crockery. 35€ per week, must be pre-booked and subject to availability at time of booking.

Shopping Service:

Email us a shopping list and these items will be in your villa when you arrive, minimum cost of the items needed must be 70€ and then a 10% service fee is added to the cost of the items purchased. 70€ worth of shopping will cost 77€, payment to be made in cash on arrival.

Flights

Andalucía Hideaways does not sell transport, nor are we responsible for any Airline, Car Hire Company, Train Operator or Ferry Company. Having lived here since 2004 I am able offer information on the different routes available; however I neither recommend nor discourage our clients from choosing the form of transport that most suits their needs. I will be delighted to advise on the pros and cons of booking the various routes and flights available and will be pleased to help find the most convenient airport, flights and timings for you.

The following flight routes are subject to occasional changes as airlines, airport and local authorities make necessary amendments.

Gibraltar (GIB)

Monarch Airlines operate flights at least 4 times a week from Luton, Brmingham & Manchester.

Easy jet operate daily flights from Gatwick and thrice weekly flights from Bristol

British Airways operates daily flights from Heathrow

Please note: When you fly into Gibraltar you will normally be met by your Car Hire Representative who will indicate where you cross the border on foot into Spain. You will be carrying/wheeling your own luggage until you get to Car Hire Office where the contract will then be signed. There are no porters nor luggage trolleys, we suggest you consider carefully, prior to booking, whether you are comfortably able to transport your own luggage without any assistance from the terminal in Gibraltar to the Car Hire Office in La Linea – a distance of approximately 300metres. If you are in any doubt – we suggest you book flights into Málaga, Jerez or Seville.

Jerez (XRY)

British Airways operates daily flights from Heathrow (via Madrid)

Ryanair operates flights 4 times a week from Stansted

Thomson operates a flight each Friday from Gatwick

Seville (SVQ)

British Airways operates daily flights from Gatwick

Easy jet operates daily flights from Gatwick

Ryanair operates flights daily flights from Stansted

Málaga (AGP)

All the airlines mentioned above and many more offer regular flights between most UK/Continental European Airports and Málaga. As there are too many options to list, the website Skyscanner should help you find the best choice of flights from your local airport.

Change of flight times

Airlines and airports reserve the right to amend their flying schedules prior to departure. You should always be advised of any significant changes as soon as the airline implements the change. However 2 weeks before travel we suggest that you check on your airline’s website and specifically check your booking, to establish that your flights are operating as per the times on your confirmation and thus avoid any surprises.

Name changes

The name shown on a ticket must exactly match the name of the passenger travelling, as it appears in his/her passport (first full name and surname). If not, you may be refused boarding and have to purchase a new ticket for your journey, so please ensure that you email us the correct names of all passengers at the time of booking. Once your flights have been booked, it is often possible to make name changes; however you will have to cover the cost of the extra charges. If there are any errors on your Flight Confirmation Invoice you should advise the airline immediately.

Online Check In, Boarding Passes, Group Seating, Extra Leg Room

Check your airline’s website thoroughly to establish their policy on checking in online, printing off boarding passes, pre-booking flight seats for your party including those with extra leg room. It is your responsibility to establish the procedures which apply to your booking.

Cabin Baggage Allowance

Each passenger aged 2 years old or over is entitled to take one piece of hand baggage into the cabin with them. As a guideline this piece of luggage should not be any larger than 55cm x 40cm x 20cm although the size varies depending on your airline. Check your airline’s website thoroughly and establish what the cabin baggage weight allowance is too.

Checked In - Luggage allowance

The majority of airlines allow passengers to pay to check in a single bag of up to 20kg of luggage per person. There is no checked in luggage allowance for infants. The amount of luggage is strictly controlled and excess luggage charges are made direct to the airline of handling agent before passengers are issued their boarding passes. If you wish to check-in any bulky items (for example children car seats, bicycles, golf clubs or surf gear), please check with the airline via their website for the costs involved.

Driving in Andalucía

When it comes to cars in Spain, small is beautiful! The smaller vehicles are easier to navigate the narrow streets of hilltop villages, historic cities and the lanes that lead to many of our villas; and of course, much easier to park. We recommend you take care when driving on these tracks, as you are responsible for any damage caused to the tyres, underside of the car or windscreens. Unless at time of completing your car hire contract you have paid extra to cover against damage to these area you will be charged by the car hire company for any damage caused whilst the car has been rented out to you.

When you are driving in Spain the law insists that you always wear a seat belt, carry your driving licence and car hire documents with you. If you are pulled over by the traffic police for a speeding or other offence, an ‘on the spot’ fine will be the least of your problems, if they find out you don’t have a driving licence and your car hire documents with you!

Taking your car to Gibraltar, Portugal or Morocco

Your insurance covers you for driving your car on the Spanish mainland, check with the rental company if you can drive into Gibraltar or Portugal; you are almost certainly not permitted to take your car to Morocco. Please be warned that the queues for cars (not for those on foot) between La Linea in Spain and Gibraltar; and vice versa - can create delays from 20mins to in excess of 2hours. We suggest you do not drive in to or out of Gibraltar. I would park in La Linea in the public car parks near the border and walk across the border controls with your passports.

Transfers

If you would prefer not to have a car for all or part of your holiday we can organise a transfer for you from your arrival airport to many of our properties. Prices start from 50euros one-way from Jerez Airport to Casa de Medina in Medina Sidonia or 90euros one-way from Jerez Airport to any of villas in El Palmar. We can request but not 100% guarantee infant/baby/booster seats which are normally provided free of charge. You may prefer to bring your own seats with you, which can normally be carried in the aircraft hold.

The Weather

Whilst the Costa de la Luz is not quite the driest or sunniest province in Spain, that award goes to the dessert like landscapes of the Costa Calida around Murcia; the sun still shines on over 300 days of the year in Cádiz, enjoying over 3000 hours of sunshine per annum. Statistically, the temperatures on the Costa de la Luz are marginally lower in the summer months; and interestingly, marginally higher in the winter months than those of neighbouring Costa del Sol – making this an ideal destination to enjoy year round

The Costa del Sol did not get its name for no good reason and enjoys plenty of sunshine year round and you can often sunbathe on the beaches even during the winter months. However inland, the temperatures vary from reliably hot in the summer to surprisingly cool in the winter months - even under the clearest of blue skies, is unlikely you could comfortably enjoy an alfresco lunch in Ronda in short sleeves during the winter months, whereas this is the norm even in January in much of the coastal towns and resorts.

Winter - Like in much of the world the climate is changing and the past few winters in Andalucía have been dryer than normal; that said, nature is wonderfully resourceful and a prolonged dry period can often be followed by above average rainfall to balance out the shortfall. Therefore, if you have great flexibility and are planning to travel between November and March and warm sunshine is a priority, you would be wise to wait until closer to the time before you book. The flights will not necessarily be as cheap as if you had booked months in advance, but there would normally be a variety of flight options to choose from and accommodation available. Check out the longer range weather forecast for various cities by clicking on to the following links:

Once you are happy with the weather forecast, you can secure your flights and accommodation, and look forward to your break in the sun.

If you are travelling over the festive period or February half-term - flights will get increasingly expensive as you get closer to the departure date. – You may be wiser to bite the bullet and secure the flights at a cheaper price, and if the weather is not ideal everyday – make plans for day trips which can be enjoyed irrelevant of the weather.

Spring & Autumn - In the early spring and late autumn months the majority of the days will be sunny and warm, although you should may get the odd cloudburst where the water tables are being topped up prior to or after a long hot summer. With the exception of Easter, the May and October half-term holidays, flights are normally plentiful and those who book earliest get the best choice of flight times, best prices and widest choice of accommodation. For those planning to travel at Easter, May and October half-term, the earlier you book flights – the cheaper they will be. It is not uncommon to spend at least 300pounds per person for return flights over these popular periods if you book closer to the departure date.

Summer - From June to September you would normally expect almost unbroken sunshine, tempered by the occasional summer storm which within hours is replaced with hot, sunny skies. As you can almost guarantee good weather during this period it is worth booking your flights as soon as possible, thus securing the best prices, flight times and naturally the accommodation which best suits your needs. The most expensive flights during this period will be the flights back to the UK over the last weekend of August, where those booking the remaining few seats can easily pay over 300 pounds one-way!

Based on the past decade or so – the statistics for Costa de la Luz are:

AverageJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Monthly sun hours 181 191 233 243 297 310 353 337 278 238 187 162
Daytime high’s °C 16 18 20 22 25 29 32 32 30 25 20 17
Daytime high’s °F 61 64 68 72 77 84 90 90 86 77 68 63
Days of rain 7 7 6 5 4 2 0 0 2 6 7 9

 

Andalucía - When to travel and why?

January: Once the celebrations of the Three Kings on the 6th January are over, there is little attraction in going to Andalucía at this time of year - the mood is very subdued following the frivolities of the festive season.

February: Spring can comes early in Andalucía, the Almond blossom, makes a perfect back drop for a Valentines break with the warmth of the sun making it ideal for romantic alfresco lunches. Cádiz hosts its annual carnival – a riot of colour to help wash away those winter blues.

March: One would normally expect fairly mild weather with a reasonable amount of sunshine, ideal for sightseeing or for enjoying the annual Flamenco Festival in Jerez which runs from late February to almost mid March. Also in Jerez, between late March and early May is the Motorbike Grand Prix.

April: Semana Santa, celebrated all over Spain from Palm Sunday to Easter Sunday followed by Fería de Sevilla make this a fabulous month, the odd April shower and days of warm sunshine make it a popular month to visit the cities and historical sites of Andalucía.

May: The wild flowers and green rolling hills make it a perfect month for walkers and photographers with long sunny days followed by cooler nights, don’t miss the Fería de Los Patios in Córdoba or La Fería del Caballo in Jerez.

June: Sunflower fields out number the poppy fields, farmers harvest their summer crop and the sun is at its strongest. An ideal month to travel if you want hot sunshine but want to avoid travelling in July and August. The Fiesta de San Juan celebrated all over Spain on the eve of the 24th June is an unforgettable experience!

July & August: Strong sunshine and hot weather. Families et al descend on the beaches and the atmosphere is one of everyone enjoying long, lazy days and balmy evenings. The cities are at the quietest with the residents decamping to the cooler costas.

September: The seawater is at its warmest, most of the children have returned to school and their parents to work, the sun caresses, so again a popular month for those who can travel outside of the school holidays. Sporadic storms help dispel the heat haze to be replaced by crisp blue skies.

October: A very popular month for those wishing to spend some time touring around, the cities are very popular as is the fiesta Día de Hispanidad on the 12th October, celbrating both Colombus discovering the new world and the Moors being expelled from Spain in 1492.

November: Starts with a fiesta on the 1st with Dia de Todos Los Santos, the last really good month for touring around, warm days and cool nights make it an ideal time to grab some sun before the winter really kicks in.

December: Fiestas on the 6th, 8th, Christmas Eve and New Years Eve make December a fun-filled month. Christmas day is normally an alfresco affair with blue skies and much cheer.