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Kids get golf lessons during their holidays

A number of children from South Wales are being taught how to play golf this summer as part of their holiday activities.

A scheme designed to get youngsters in the Neath and Port Talbot areas playing sports and staying active is underway and is being organised by the George Best Foundation and supported by the Ryder Cup.

The 70 or so children involved, who are aged between seven and 15, have been instructed on some of the basic shots in golf and it is hoped that they will get a taste for the game and look to hone their skills.

A local representative of the foundation behind the scheme Pat Lyons told the Port Talbot Guardian: "Their first day saw them fire shots towards a hole 40 yards away with the nearest players getting towels and shirts as prizes.

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Irish making more trips to Europe

Irish consumers have been taking more and more trips to Europe in recent years, according to figures from the Central Statistics Office (CSO).

During the first three months of this year, close to 960,000 journeys were made between Ireland and parts of Europe outside the UK, which was an increase of almost 180,000 from two years ago.

Other areas of the world are also becoming increasingly popular with Irish tourists, while holidays in Spain are proving to be particularly well liked in the republic.

Indeed, holidays to Spain were the most common kind of overseas break taken by people from Ireland in the first quarter of this year, with the exception of the UK, the CSO has revealed.

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Holidays spending habits highlighted

A report from the Cater Allen Private Bank has highlighted some of the spending habits among British holidaymakers.

Over the course of a year, British tourists spend a collective total of close to £64 billion and for almost one-third of people their holiday expenses account for ten per cent or more of their annual budget.

There are plenty of good deals available on holidays to Spain and to the La Manga Club and Britons tend to be happy enough to splash the cash when it comes to travelling to their favourite sun-drenched destinations.

On a regional basis, people living in the south-east of England are among the biggest holiday spenders, while those in Wales generally keep a tighter reign on their purse strings, Cater Allen reports.

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Holidays 'are a necessity'

Holidays in Spain or in other parts of the world tend to be viewed by British consumers as a necessity and not a luxury, one expert has asserted.

With this in mind, many people have already planned and booked their 2009 getaway despite the financial constraints millions of families in Britain are feeling, suggests Ian Bradley, a spokesperson for the Association Independent Tour Operators.

Tennis holidays in La Manga and trips to the southern Mediterranean in general are among those being booked by British tourists and the aim for many is to save regularly to make sure their holiday plans become a reality.

"People are deciding that they are going to take their holiday next year and want to budget for it at the moment - book it now and save up in the meantime," explained Mr Bradley.

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Spanish Villas

Villa rentals in Spain are not, as it is sometimes believed, the preserve of older couples who are veterans when it comes to holidays in Spain. Nor are they favoured only by families with children - although indeed this demographic undoubtedly accounts for a large portion of the Spanish villa rental market.

Indeed Spanish holiday villas are becoming an increasingly viable option for all types of holidaymakers, in particular those travelling from Britain who are feeling the pinch of the credit crunch.

Spanish holiday villas are also popular properties to rent for those who are perhaps not feeling the effects of the credit crunch as much as others, such as celebrities.

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