Young holidaymakers kick back with some cocktails, over a bar draped with the Union Jack.
Margot, Gregory and Tamara take in the local culture
If you believe consumer champion Which?, the concept of ‘free’ banking can be filed next to the theory about hairy palms.
  • | by Kristian Dando


As anyone who was unfortunate enough to watch grubby ‘90s docu-soaps like Ibiza Uncovered would testify, UK residents are most likely to throw caution – and clothing – to the wind and be more ‘daring’ when abroad on their holidays. And now we’ve got the proof.*

Maybe it’s the sun. Or, more likely, it’s the titanic amounts of pop that British people typically quaff when they’re away - the poll reckoned that 57% of people drink more when they’re on holiday, after all.

But for some reason, inhibitions seem to be left at the baggage-check in. The nation’s bank clerks and estate agents let go, riding on those comical inflatable bananas towed by speedboats, eating bull testicles and indulging in apparently consequence-free liaisons with an array of often-questionable partners.

If you’re not cutting loose when you’re on holiday, you’re doing it all wrong. But it makes sense to make sure that you’ve gone and sorted yourself out with a decent travel policy which will make sure that you’re covered in case of something awful happening –  the poll reckoned that 8% of people need medical attention when away, and 2% have to have an overnight stay in hospital.’s Jeremy Cryer, sporting his best flip-flops, Bermuda shorts and a ‘MINE’S A LARGE ONE – FALIRAKI ‘92’ t-shirt, said: "Holidays should be a time for having fun and trying out new things, but it's important to have the right travel insurance in place and to be aware of any terms and conditions the insurer may enforce if you have to make a claim.”

Sipping from a cocktail served in a pineapple, with a sparkler and a large, flamboyant umbrella protruding from it, he continued: “With adventurous activities it's important to know what you are covered for. If you're feeling daring and fancy a go at parasailing, be aware that if you have an accident you may not be able to claim for medical expenses if it's not an activity you're covered for on your policy. It's always best to check that you have the right cover before you buy and to read the policy documents carefully."

Well, that’s that cleared up then.


There are a few myths that the Money Shot has swallowed hook, line and sinker in its time – most notably, the one about drinking whisky to put hair on your chest. The Money Shot drank nothing but Johnny Walker Black Label for a month to stop the catcalls and taunts it endured in the changing rooms on account of its sausage-like appearance. It ended up with nothing more than a pallid, green complexion and severe abdominal cramps.

If you believe consumer champion Which?, the concept of ‘free’ banking can be filed next to the theory about hairy palms. Apparently, it’s hokum. A nonsense. Poppycock.

Because of lousy interest rates and sky-high overdraft fees, Which? reckons that the supposedly ‘free’ current accounts that most of us have are anything but. And with banks lobbying for the right to charge up to £15 a month to cover stuff like cash machine withdrawals, direct debits, standing orders and cheques, the consumer organisation was in combative mood this week.

“The suggestion that banks should increase charges to avoid more scandals defies logic and is a slap in the face for consumers who are being hit hard by one of the worst financial crises in recent times,” thundered Which? executive director Peter Vicary-Smith. “It’s a disgrace that the very people who bailed out the banks are being asked to pay more for the most basic accounts, while the industry continues to be rocked by scandals like PPI mis-selling, Libor rate-rigging and IT failures. Banks must be far more transparent about their fees and charges so that people can clearly see what they already pay.”

While you’re here, why not see what current accounts are on the market at the moment?


Scottish and Southern has announced that it’ll be raising the price of energy by 9%, a moved described as a “hard blow” by Consumer Focus.

Quantitative easing has cost savers £70bn, according to the very institution behind it – the Bank of England.

A motorist has been sued for £1,100 after NOT going to see a doctor for a spurious whiplash claim.


What help can first-time buyers get” pondered Felicity Hannah, who’s got a black belt (fifth dan) in mortgages.

Geroff the sofa and make some cheddar this Bank Holiday” urged go-getting achiever Rachel England.

“I’M NOT SOBBING, HONEST, SEE” pleaded Kristian Dando at some of the heart-warming tales at the Cats Protection Cat Awards.

There was this bit about the SSE price hikes, too.


Kent firefighters have issued a timely reminder to motorists of the hazards of driving into a petrol station when your car is on fire, after a man driving a Renault pulled into a Co-op forecourt on the A2 after realising his car was ablaze.

An doubtless dishy firefighting spokesman was on hand to comment. "If you realise that your car might be alight when you are driving, pull over at the first available opportunity, but try to avoid exposing other people to risk," he said, possibly while fighting off the amorous advances of a shrieking hen party.

*Research commissioned by and carried out by Vision Critical in March 2012. The group comprised 1,326 UK consumers who had holidayed abroad in the last five years.