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Planning for 1st trip in March 2015 (Easter Hols)

Portsmouth...
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Planning for 1st trip in March 2015 (Easter Hols)

Hi all,

We are looking into a 2 week trip to Goa for the Easter Hols and don't even know where to start so I was hoping I might take a little of your time :-)

I am assuming from what I have read so far that End of March (28th) beginning of April is coming to the end of the season, with that in mind... Is it likely flights will get any cheaper at some point ? £6-700 at the moment.

Is it still hot at the end of the season ?

What area would be a good starter for a first timer, family of 4 with kids 15 and 13 ? The choices are so vast that I don't know where to start.

I am comfortable booking places online and calling rather than having a package so can anyone recommend any very good top quality hotels in areas we may like to visit.

How much does it cost to live for a couple of weeks out there, roughly obviously, decent quality meals for 4 ?

How safe is it, is security a worry or just standard keep your wits about you type of thing.

Finally how do you avoid Delhi Belly (we have never been to India) is it the water or the food ?

Sorry to sound so ignorant but holidayed almost exclusively in the USA for 20 years + and I literally have no idea :-(

Many thanks in advance for your replies.

Tom

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Retford, United...
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1. Re: Planning for 1st trip in March 2015 (Easter Hols)

If you're happy to book independent of the charter companies, then there are lots of airlines to choose, we fly Jet Air, although we live in Notts, we travel to LHR and then you have daily flights twice a day with them (and many other schedule airlines) I believe some fly from other main airports too but we've not found the regionals so competitive. You will have to transit with schedule. We take 9pm from LHR, transit Mumbai and arrive Goa following afternoon . Returning early morning from Goa arriving LHR 5.40pm same day. You could also then have any number of days. I've just paid £650 each for flights and we get 46kg each luggage.

Most accommodation in Goa is available from mid day. This might influence your flight times?

Accommodation varies greatly, we stayed in the Country Inn and Suites this year, couldn't fault it. I have done a review on TA for it. As first timers you might want something of that quality. Next year we've booked Sonika's Herritage. We had a look while there this time. We've also done whispering Palms and Phoenix Park.

Food is mostly good quality, some where like grills and curries or Mermiaid, you can have a main course of steak and the trimmings for about £4 each.

Hygiene I would say is he main problem for Delhi belly, we use bacterial hand wash before eating anywhere, and I always use a glass rather than drinking straight from a bottle, but if you do get it, don't worry the pharmacies are well used to us tourists! Don't bother taking anything with you, they have it all much cheaper!

This year we spent about £500 on food and drink for 2 of us for 3 weeks. That was everything except breakfast.

Many other experienced TA'ers will have lots more experience than me.

Penarth, United...
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2. Re: Planning for 1st trip in March 2015 (Easter Hols)

Hi Tom

travelling with children i always used Highland Beach Resort in Candolim at easter.

Thay have two bedroomed/ two bathroom apartments. No cooking facilities, but it's so cheap to eat out you don't need to cook, several evenings we bought take out pizza from Jambolia just at the bottom of the lane from the hotel.

weather is still hot and getting more humid but at least this hotel as ac in both bedrooms.

All the shacks and restaurants will be still open and not starting to close down for a couple more weeks.

I always take a travel kettle so I can have a coffee first thing.

My daughter has been coming with us since shewas 12 and at 25 she still likes to come with us

Kim

mansfield
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3. Re: Planning for 1st trip in March 2015 (Easter Hols)

Hi Tom, while I thoroughly recommend Goa as a holiday venue for you and your family, may I alert you to the need to acquire visas[ I apologise if you already are aware ] which cost about £100 each, a total of £400 [although visa on arrival has been mooted until something concrete is known its best to assume the worst and visas will be similar to this year ] which you may not have budgeted for, if you have rest assured every thing else in India is very cheap also the weather will be very hot its the hottest time of season.

Liverpool, United...
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for Goa
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4. Re: Planning for 1st trip in March 2015 (Easter Hols)

Hi,

Tourist season runs roughly Nov to April. So yes April is the end of season and things will start to shut down and charters will stop running.

Goa is very hot in April and very humid I was there this April and it was in the late 30s.

North Goa would probably be more suited to a family with children as there are plenty of bars and restaurants available with beaches on your door step look at Candolim, Calangute, Baga and Arpora.

Goa can be as cheap or expensive as you like. There are some high end restaurants and some great not so posh places and the prices vary, but it is fantastic value for money. Beer and local spirits are very cheap but wine can be very expensive and quality poor.

Goa is safe if you have your normal wits about you just treat it like any other holiday destination.

Don't drink tap water and don't brush your teeth with it. Only drink bottled water.

Remember you need to consider visas, malaria tablets and vaccinations.

Cheers

Stels

Vagator, India
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5. Re: Planning for 1st trip in March 2015 (Easter Hols)

A charter flight is the quickest way to get there but they have been expensive compared to Schedule flights for the last couple of years unless you can get an end of season package deal

Qatar is the the next best thing taking a couple of hours longer due to the change of planes at Doha but it does help to break the boredom of long haul also they fly from several UK airports flights and cost from about £500 but can be well over £700 if you don't wait for a deal to come up however a lot of us long stayers prefer to use Jet Airways via Mumbai

Hotels and apartments should be easy to book late March check out TA's reviews and come back with a short list tripadvisor.in/Hotels-g297605-Candolim_Barde…

Agree with Stella, think North Goa will offer more for the youngsters, Baga and Calangute are the livest but Candolim is also great not quite so manic, Arpora is some way from the beach, think you would need transport after a few days but taxi's are cheap or the bus costs pennies and can be exciting in the day time

Portsmouth...
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6. Re: Planning for 1st trip in March 2015 (Easter Hols)

Thank you for the pointers :-)

Gives me a great starting point for my research :-)

Tom

england
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7. Re: Planning for 1st trip in March 2015 (Easter Hols)

tom,,good Friday april the 3rd,and theres a good book on goa,,lonely planets ,guide to goa,,its a good read,,you will sill get a lot of help of this forum,,but the book is handy, your local library may have a copy...if not a good book shop. http://www.lonelyplanet.com/india/goa

London, United...
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for Cavelossim
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8. Re: Planning for 1st trip in March 2015 (Easter Hols)

And, if you plan on booking a DIY holiday, take a look at booking flights to Bombay and then booking separate domestic flights from Bombay to Goa. You can sometimes pick up the domestic flights for about £30 each way, usually only a 15k baggage allowance now, but excess weight charges are quite reasonable if you have a slightly heavier bag to check in. Plenty of domestic airlines ply the route so prices are very competitive - Air India, Jet, Jetlite, Indigo, and Spice Jet. You could allow yourselves a side trip in the way back to Bombay, by which time you will have adjusted to India, albeit that Goa is India Lite, and be ready to hit that big fabulous city for a couple of days! Stay south as that is where most of the tourist sites are - my favourite hotel is the Trident on Marine Drive, adjoining the Oberoi, but just a tad cheaper. It has a fab pool, overlooking the ocean, which is nice to come back to for a few lazy hours after a hard morning and early afternoon's worth of sightseeing. Quite a few people on this forum speak highly of the more budget priced Fort Residency hotel in the Fort area, just north of Colaba - the rooms look okay, but give me my ocean facing room at The Trident any day of the week!

dagenham
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9. Re: Planning for 1st trip in March 2015 (Easter Hols)

Goa, can be very hot April May, but I would say, to you, The beach and sea swimming is not good at all as the sea is very rough, All depends on how old children are, the hotel pools are good and warm at this time of the year, ALL the airlines have huge sales, the scedual air lines go in to Delhi or Mumbia, then get internal flights, All tours go direct into Goa. just get direct flights to goa on line Monarch Thomas cook Thompson do just flights skyscanner, can also do dieect flights.

We have put our own tour to gether, Flying into NewDelhi for golden trieangel, 5 nights, Then on to Mumbia for 2 nights then on to Goa calengute for 17nights, All for £1345.95 PER PERSON 5* HOTELS, SO CAN BE DONE. I would sugest looking for a place bit more up the coast for safer beaches, Baga calengute and candoline are all one big long beach. we spent a day in Morjam area beach was good, sea calm,

As for food, very cheap. drinks well huge bottle bear 90p spirits 30p dinner and drinks for 4 highest would be total £15, all depends on what you want. We are staying at the BR resort, it has a fantastic bar and pool and food well we never ate out, breakie included in price, i allways book flights then email hotels then ring. Check booking.com for hotels they are very accurate on discription, but dont include taxes, so 18% extra. is to be added on. If you want to know any more please message me. this is our 4th time back to india, we love it, Its smelly dirty vibrant colourfull, people are fantastic, and so laid back and CHEAP. dont forget injections, maleria tabs, wont need a lot of clothes, NOTHING WHITE, Just vest shorts mozzyrepelant sun facter 50. its an addictive county. also get your visas, happy holiday

Macclesfield...
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10. Re: Planning for 1st trip in March 2015 (Easter Hols)

I wouldn't rule out packages. At least they fly direct and there are some good deals to be found. Just seen £640 for 15 nights at Lui Beach Resort flying out with Thomas Cook from Manchester.

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