All descriptions of our programme including hotels, facilities, local scene, etc., is correct at the time of publication, and is given in good faith. Every effort is made to ensure that the information we produce is accurate.
It must be appreciated however that hotel pools do need cleaning, that local public holidays may mean that maids would have an extra day off and the local scene does tend to change - bars close, new ones open, and so on. Please also note that heating for pools may be switched off during summer periods, and that accommodations may make an extra charge for the use of "included" facilities like water sport equipment, safes, etc.
Check-in & Check-out times
Generally, check-in times range between 2pm and 4pm, and check-out between 10am and 12 noon. Subject to the availability of rooms, you may be able to check in earlier. Early check-in is at the discretion of the hotel and cannot be guaranteed unless you book and pay for the accommodation from the night prior to arrival.
Parking charges at hotels may be applicable and are not included in the prices shown. Leisure facilities featured at hotels are not necessarily free of charge. The use of facilities such as health clubs, tennis courts, golf courses, horse-riding, motorized water sports and scuba diving are normally subject to a fee. Some facilities may also only be available seasonally. Hotel Wi-Fi may be subject to a fee.
Renovations and/or construction work may sometimes be taking place at your chosen hotel/resort. When we have been advised of this and consider that it may affect the enjoyment of your holiday we will notify you as soon as possible. However, while every effort will be made, it may not always be possible to advise you of emergency repairs prior to your departure from the UK.
You booking confirmation will show your name the names of the people that you have booked to stay with you. Only these named clients will be able to stay at the accommodation. These are non-transferable bookings. If a name change is required please do this prior to arrival with Freedom To. The hotels will not be able to assist.
Most hotel prices are based on a standard room for up to two adults. Upgraded room types are available at a supplement; meals are only included where stated. Rooms are generally allocated on a ‘run of house’ basis, which means you can be allocated a room in any part of the property, unless otherwise stated.
Most hotels, and coach companies now operate a complete non-smoking policy. Cities in some countries ban smoking in public places such as bars and restaurants.
Special offers cannot be used in conjunction or combined with any other offers with other special offers. Special offers are subject to availability and terms and conditions will apply. Offers can be changed or revoked at any time.
Every effort has been made to ensure that the hotels and other accommodation featured on this website are correctly represented and will fulfill your expectations for quality and service. It is important to note that, where used; the star classification system is our own and does not conform to any internationally recognized system. The rating, in our opinion, reflects a true representation of the merits of each property. Inevitably, standards will differ slightly between the many destinations which we feature.
2* Economical and comfortable accommodation offering a simple standard of room and limited facilities.
3* Comfortable accommodation with standard rooms, amenities and public areas. Most three-star properties offer a restaurant on-site and some have a swimming pool.
4* Good superior accommodation offering a selection of services. Most four star hotels feature a choice of restaurants and in addition, many also have a health club and swimming pool.
5* Five-star hotels offer the highest standards of service and facilities and are acknowledged as the leading properties in the area.
In most of the destinations featured on this site, supplies of water and electricity are generally very reliable, however in some of the less developed and more remote destinations you may experience occasional power cuts and water restrictions. Water quality can also differ from the UK and we recommend drinking bottled water which is widely available.
For specific information concerning local law and attitudes to open same-sex relationships, you might want to seek advice from local gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender groups. Contact details can normally be found in travel publications or on the Internet. They are often best placed to advise you of local laws and sentiment.
We often have a good idea of the situation on the ground for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender travellers, particularly in the more popular holiday destinations. You may also want to seek advice from the Embassy or High Commission of the country you will be visiting.
In some cultures, heterosexual friends of the same sex show affection for each other by holding hands where this might not be the norm in the UK. However, an excessive physical show of affection, by both same-sex and heterosexual couples, is often best avoided in public. In some countries this can offend local sensitivities and could cause difficulties.
The Police in many areas of the world have been known to carry out entrapment campaigns on those involved in what they consider to be lewd or indecent behaviour. Find out about the local situation; we recommend discretion where you are unsure.
Be wary of new-found ‘friends’ and be aware that criminals, especially thieves, have been known to exploit the generally open and relaxed nature of gay ‘neighbourhoods’ and beaches. Never leave your belongings unattended and try to avoid carrying large amounts of money around with you.
Do what you can to avoid potentially risky situations, just as you would do at home, and remember that alcohol can affect your judgement and your ability to react. Be aware of your environment, remain alert, and stay in control. You may attract unwelcome attention or receive unwelcome remarks. Most people find that it is usually best to ignore them.
For the gay traveller
As a rule of thumb, gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender travellers are more likely to experience difficulties in rural areas, where open same-sex relationships are often less common, than in urban and resort areas.
Be aware that some resorts can be quite segregated: when you’re outside of the distinct gay ‘neighbourhoods’ open expressions of your sexuality might be frowned upon.
Can I be 'out' while travelling abroad?
This is a decision that you need to make for yourself after having carefully examined the local situation. In many parts of the world an element of homophobia and macho-ism is prevalent, and gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people often maintain a low profile.
Public handholding, kissing and other outward signs of affection are not commonplace in many countries around the world, and excessive physical displays of affection are generally frowned upon for both heterosexual and same-sex couples. While some cities may appear to be gay-friendly destinations with distinct gay ‘neighbourhoods’, outside of these districts, and especially in rural areas, gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender travellers may experience open hostility. It is normally best to use caution in situations where you are unsure of the reception you may receive, as you would do in the UK.
Can you advise on the age of consent overseas?
In many countries the age of consent is different for heterosexual and same-sex relationships, and can vary from region to region within a country. Reference desks at public libraries and student support centres at local universities are often good sources of local information for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender travellers. The Embassy or High Commission of the country that you intend to visit may be able to advise you on local laws and customs and on the age of consent.
In which parts of the world am I likely to have particular difficulties?
In some countries same-sex relationships are illegal and punishable by imprisonment or even the death penalty. You should check attitudes towards same-sex relationships in the country you plan to visit, and exercise caution where unsure. Gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender travellers may have particular difficulties in countries where a large percentage of the population have strongly-held religious beliefs which have traditionally been opposed to same-sex relationships.
Why can't the Foreign and Commonwealth Office provide a list of countries where same-sex relationships are illegal?
In many countries same-sex relationships are not specifically mentioned in law, and in others the law is unclear. Even in some countries where same-sex relationships are legal, certain acts may be illegal, and discrimination can exist. Often, local society can be intolerant of open same-sex relationships, although same-sex relationships might not necessarily be against the law. Likewise, in some countries where same-sex relationships are illegal, the particular law is not necessarily strictly enforced. In some countries, a distinction is also drawn in law between men and women. The best advice is to check with a local gay organisation and, as appropriate, Embassy or High Commission of the country you are visiting. Always play safe where unsure.
What should I do if I run into problems while overseas?
Seek the advice of your tour operator, local police or the nearest your nearest consulate if the issue is serious. The consular staff of your country overseas are there to help all nationals, and your concerns will be taken seriously.
Packing Your Bags
Always pack your own bags and never carry any items for anyone else. Please carry the following items in your hand luggage only: Passports, Visa Documents, Air-Tickets, Accommodation Vouchers, Insurance Documents, Money, Travellers Cheques, Credit Cards, Driving License. Only one piece of hand baggage is permitted for those travelling from the UK. Strict restrictions are also in place for those transporting liquid and fluid in their hand baggage, they must be stored in containers no larger than 100ml and carried in a clear plastic bag.
“Gay Friendly” – An Explanation
All of the accommodation we feature is “Gay Friendly” – this term refers to mixed accommodation, where the management and staff welcome gay guests. These accommodation are carefully selected and seldom, if ever, poses problems for our clients. However, you should be aware that while we do not envisage any problems, and while the overwhelming vast majority of holidays pass without incident, we cannot be held responsible for the behaviour of other guests booked with other holiday companies.
If you are made to feel uncomfortable in anyway, please contact us, and we will do our best to remedy the situation. You may find that some ‘Gay Friendly’ properties will have their fair share of families with children, especially during school holidays. If you feel this may adversely affect your enjoyment please seek the advice of our staff before you book.
Our site indicates certain properties that are unsuitable for clients who are disabled. However, that does not mean that all other properties are ‘disabled friendly’.
Freedom To will do its very best to ascertain the suitability of any particular property but the company has not researched in detail factors such as door widths, height of lavatories or baths, number of steps etc. We welcome enquiries from all potential customers, regardless of physical abilities, but would ask that you bear in mind that we are not a company that specialises in holidays for the disabled, and while we do our best to accommodate disabled guests we cannot guarantee that overseas provisions will be entirely satisfactory.
Driving restrictions differ for all the destinations we feature. We will only book car hire for those aged 21 or over, who have held their license for at least 12 months. Strict penalties operate for violating local drink driving laws and you are strongly advised not to drive if you have consumed any alcohol. Driving on the opposite side of the road and unfamiliar road signs and markings can be confusing and you are advised to allow yourself time to adjust.
Care for the environment
As tourists, we are guests in other people’s countries. We would ask you to take particular care to save water, turn off lights when not in use, to dispose of litter carefully and to be aware of the risks of fire when discarding matches and lit cigarette butts. Just a little thought helps preserve the environment both for our hosts overseas and for future holiday makers.
If you have any special requests regarding your Freedom To Holiday, please tell us when you book. Although we are unable to guarantee every request, we will do our best to ensure that your wishes are carried out.
Health & Safety
You will find that most hotels and apartments abroad do not employ a lifeguard. You therefore need to adopt a sensible attitude around the pool and make sure children and non-swimmers in your party are supervised at all times by you/an appropriate adult, even when using the kids pool or kids pool section of a main pool. Diving is discouraged but if you do please check that the water is deep enough and take particular note of any depth markings. Take care when walking around the pool, as pool surrounds are often slippery when wet. You should not enter the pool after drinking alcohol. Familiarize yourself and your party with all of the notices around the pool together with any ‘pool rules’ and opening times.
Tips to aid safety when using the swimming pool:
Always check the pool design and layout before getting in.
Always shower before entering the pool water.
Check your height in relation to the pool depth.
Find out where the deep and shallow areas are, plus any slopes.
Check for any “hidden” obstacles in the water (e.g.…. rocks, ledges).
Never dive from the pool side into less than 1.5m of water, and never dive from bridges, rocks, or other decorative features.
Check to see if the pool has a lifeguard in attendance. If so, when?
If using a water slide, ensure you and any children in your care leave a safe gap between descents and that when at the bottom move away quickly from the discharge area.
Do not use the pool if you cannot see the bottom.
Swim before eating and drinking, not immediately after.
Check what to do in an emergency. If it is not stated, ask.
Always supervise children, especially if the kid’s pool is close to the main pool or is a section of the main pool.
Do not swim at night (or when the pool is closed).
If you or anyone in your party is or has been ill recently with a stomach upset or diarrhoea, avoid using the pool.
Remember to always use adequate protection against the sun’s rays.
Seas & Beaches
At times, especially during rough conditions, dangerous currents may be present. Please be aware that not all beaches will have a lifeguard in attendance. Please follow the flag warning signals available on most beaches and swim in the designated areas. Be especially careful if you have small children.
Tips to aid safety when using the sea and beaches:
Familiarize yourself with the local flag warning system.
See local advice on the safest beaches.
Check to see if the beach has a lifeguard in attendance.
Swim parallel to the shore, within your depth.
Beware of local conditions (e.g. tides, winds, currents) seek advice.
Supervise children at all times.
Swim before eating and drinking, not immediately after.
Do not swim at night.
Find out what the appropriate emergency procedure is.
Beware of any “zones” for power boats, jet skis etc.
Remember to always use adequate protection against the sun’s rays.
Sports & Activities
Adequate travel insurance is essential. It is your responsibility to ensure that the insurance cover you purchase is suitable and adequate for your particular needs. Please therefore ensure that the insurance policy you/members of your party have is suitable and adequate for your particular needs and will cover you in the event of a sports/activity accident. Some activities are deemed more dangerous and are NOT covered or carry a higher premium. Please therefore ensure that you read the policy and if you are unsure, ask.
Due to varying road conditions overseas, we do not recommend moped hire. Should you still decide to hire a moped, we strongly advise that you wear a crash helmet at all times and to wear appropriate clothing and footwear whilst driving. You should take out full insurance cover.
Food & drink - Illness
We would always recommend that you drink bottled water and avoid ice in drinks. Always be sure that food is properly cooked or properly chilled and that salads and unpeeled fruits have been thoroughly washed. If in doubt, do not eat it, and try not to over indulge. If you or any member of your party is ill ensure that a doctor is seen locally, and that you inform your accommodation provider and/or Travel 2 during your stay.
Please take care of your valuables at all times, particularly when out and about in the resort. Most holiday destinations have their share of pickpockets. We would advise that you use a safety deposit box if you can, and limit the amount of cash you carry. Remember to lock your doors at night and when you go out during the day, as you would at home.
Check your own governments travel site for the best information and advice for the area you are travelling too. The will usually have frequently updated information.