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Visa-free Vietnam and a planned tourist tax for New Zealand, plus Calabria gets closer and Japanese style in Tel Aviv


If you’re planning to travel to Vietnam, the country’s government has confirmed another extension of its visa waiver for UK passport holders, for single-entry stays for up to 15 days.

The visa exemption programme will be running for another three years, until July 30, 2021, and also applies to French, German, Spanish and Italian nationals. Direct flights from Heathrow cost from £463 with Vietnam Airlines.

Book a trip with Selective Asia and you could learn more about the destination’s everyday life as part of its Go Local programme too. Connecting travellers with local people, experiences range from street food and life music to visiting a village community.

The programme is also available in Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Myanmar, Philippines, Sri Lanka and Thailand, while another of the company’s services, Guide Connect, introduces travellers to their guides before leaving the UK as well.

Step into Italy's boot

The little known area of Calabria in southern Italy will be easier to discover from next year, with new flights and holidays from TUI.

The routes out of Gatwick and Manchester airports will run from summer 2019, along with the tour operator’s new breaks in Calabria, set in the toe of Italy’s  boot; the country’s far south-west.

As well as 500 miles of coastline to discover, the company is also opening the first Italian hotel in its all-inclusive club brand here, with the redesign of an existing 641-room resort to become Magic Life Calabria from May. 

New Zealand's tourist tax

Visitors to New Zealand could be  faced with a tourism tax from next year, with money raised used to support conservation projects and upgrade tourism infrastructure.

The tax, expected to be around £18, according to travel experts at New Zealand In Depth, would raise an estimated £40 million per year.

Tokyo in Tel Aviv

The Hotel Montefiore in Tel Aviv has launched a new Japanese experience for this summer, based around design, wellness and cuisine.

The Tokyo in Tel Aviv package, available for stays from Sunday to Wednesday until August 31, includes a tasting dinner for two at Disco Tokyo, and massage at the Yoko Kithara Japanese spa.

From around £600, based on two sharing.


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