Cities that won’t break the bank


You don’t have to break the bank to take your loved one on a romantic city break. Directline Holidays have deals to cities less expensive than the more traditional destinations such as Rome, Venice and Paris.

According to the World Backpacker Index for 2013 published by, which compared 116 cities around the world, Venice ranked among the three most expensive cities along with Oslo and Zurich for travellers. Paris did not fare much better, ranked 102 out of 116 with number 116 being the most expensive country worldwide!

The Post Office’s Annual Holiday Costs Barometer, which monitors the prices in 42 key holiday destinations worldwide, showed that Spain has emerged as one of the best-value destinations for 2013. Prices in Spain are now 41 per cent cheaper than they were five years ago.

Directline Holidays boss Maria Whiteman said: “A luxurious, romantic trip to Paris or Venice is not always realistic for most pay packets. However, travelling to a lesser-known destination means budgets can go further, allowing holidaymakers to relax and enjoy a truly romantic break, rather than constantly counting the pennies. We have city breaks and package holidays to over 40 countries, enabling holidaymakers to choose the destination that suits their budget this Valentine’s Day.” Deals include:

Budapest, Hungary: Often referred to as the ‘Paris of the East’, Budapest is one of the most romantic and beautiful cities in Europe. Offering magnificent castles, historic cathedrals and stunning architecture set along a pretty river. The thermal spas are ideal for a romantic soak with a loved one. Two nightsB&B at the three-star Atrium Fashion Hotel, departing Stansted on February 13, costs from £144 per person.

Krakow, Poland: Krakow came among the top three cheapest places to visit in Europe. Ideal for weekend breaks, the beautiful old city and local culture will entertain and enrapture as a strong contender to the more-expensive Prague and it looks beautiful in winter. Three nights room-only at the three star Petrus Hotel, from Gatwick on February 13 from £180 per person.

Sofia, Bulgaria: Sofia is a welcoming and pleasant city for tourists and is definitely a bargain. According to the European Backpacker Index for 2013, it came out as the second cheapest place to travel to in Europe, after Bucharest in Romania. Sofia is slightly off the beaten path so that couples can lose themselves in the romantic settings and have plenty of privacy. Two nights B&B at the three-star Blugari Hotel, from Gatwick on February 13 from £275 per person.

Seville, Spain: Seville is usually sunny and warm at this time of the year, and the city boasts romantic Moorish architecture and cosy tapas bars. Spain now offers the cheapest all-round holiday prices with prices looking to continue dropping further. Two nights B&B at the three-star Vime Corregidor Hotel, from Gatwick on February 14, from £335 per person.

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