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STA Travel Blog

72 hours in hidden china – Guangzhou

China Southern Airlines have long been loved by travellers for their great value fares to Australia/New Zealand and Asia. Now there’s an extra reason to fly with them; the new 72-hour Visa-Free scheme means passengers can break their journey in Guangzhou without the need to obtain a visa and explore part of China less visited by western tourists for three whole days.

So now you know you CAN (it’s an airport code joke. Sorry.) the question is, should you? What’s in Guangzhou that’s worth visiting? Well quite a lot actually…


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6 Travel mistakes the Inbetweeners made in Oz, and how to avoid them!

We admit there are some obvious mistakes from the epic Inbetweeners 2 movie that we’ve missed out – after all everyone hates spoilers. For the benefit of those who’ve seen it let’s just say they included fire-side singing, sunburn and EVERYTHING that happened at the water park. Everything.

But believe it or not there are lessons from the lads that all travellers to Oz and beyond can learn from, whether we plan on being total idiots or not…

 Really. Everything.

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Your Time is Now – Summer camp USA

As part of our series on Gap Years, sabbaticals, big trips and everything in between, today’s blog comes from Sarah Richard who spent a summer in a camp in Pennsylvania.

“This is the hardest job you will ever love”. That’s what my camp director told us on the last day of camp after 11 non stop weeks of being a child. I mean being a camp counsellor. Honestly if he’d said that on the first day of camp I would have rolled my eyes (Americans are so cheesy). But, after approximately 73 days of being cried on, confided in and having shaving foam launched at me, I could have thrown my arms in the air and shouted ‘Hallelujah’ (now who’s the cheesy one).

So what is the fuss about working at a summer camp and why do tens of thousands of adults from all around the world sacrifice their summer to work across the US each year?

I asked myself the same question…

smores

 Let's be honest, s'mores are a big part of it

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23 reasons you should go Island hopping in Fiji

Now, we don’t think you’re really going to need a lot of convincing on this. Whether it’s the breathtaking Mamanuccas or the seeming endless swathe of the Yasawas (they’ve got some great names out there) Fiji is quite simply paradise on earth.

With all this to explore and no boat of your own (we’re assuming – we may be wrong) a trip to this area can seem quite daunting. But where as in Oz, Nz and Latin America you can jump on a hop-on hop-off bus, Fiji has it’s own version with the hop-on hop-off Yasawa flyer. Jump on, sit back and explore your new favourite part of the world.

Fiji beach

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Your Time is Now – 12 budgeting tips for big trips

As part of our series on Gap Years, sabbaticals, big trips and everything in between, today’s blog comes from online marketing exec and spreadsheet geek Sarah Verrall

 
Back in 2011, my boyfriend and I made the now-not-so-crazy decision to take a career break and travel the world for 8 long, glorious months. We had worked hard to save up but we didn’t quite manage to save as much as we would’ve liked, so travelling on a tight budget was something we had to get good at pretty quick.

When I arrived back in London in summer 2012, I had done the unthinkable; I had come back with nearly £1000.

“How on Earth did you manage that?” I hear you ask.

Okay, I’m a massive geek. I admit it. We kept an expenses spreadsheet when we were travelling, tracking every penny we spent. Now, I totally understand keeping a spreadsheet is not everyone’s cup of tea and some of you may think I’m a total nut job (although anyone who loves to channel their inner geek or is interested in how much we spent in each country can download my spreadsheet here). For those that shudder at the thought of it, there are plenty of other great ways you can keep your spending habits in check whilst travelling. Here are my top tips for travelling on a budget:

travel money
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