Exchange rate 112

Forget the peamen - Fine the punter!

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The peamen – sometimes also referred to as the potato men are the scourge of Benidorm and should be given a very wide berth. They operate in gangs, usually on busy thoroughfares such as the Levante promenade, on the Avd Mediterraneo or around the Indoor Market. They entice people to stop by shouting and cheering, waving €20 notes that they have supposedly just won by guessing which potato half the pea is hidden under – hence the name. But the ‘crowd’ is actually members of the gang, some of which are Brits to make it look more authentic.

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Altea on the march

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The much anticipated Moors parade took place in Altea yesterday evening – the highlight of the annual fiesta calendar. After the carnival in Rio this must definitely come a close second for elaborate and eye catching outfits! Hundreds packed the main street to watch and admire, with cameras poised while jostling for prime position.

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Benidorm campsites

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Now that the peak summer season is over, the resort sees the return of the ‘snowbirds' – retired Brits who flock here to escape the cold British winter. In fact, it is not only the Brits that repeat this annual pilgrimage but other north European citizens such as the Dutch, Germans and increasingly Belgian nationals. Each year the numbers appear to increase, with Brits in search of winter warmth and thus avoid the spiraling fuel bills at home. Many drive over, either with a caravan attached or in a motorhome, with bicycles tied to the back. There is certainly plenty of choice when they arrive – some will have pre-booked a site space, reserving from one year to the next whilst other take their chance and pull up with their life possessions, looking for the best bargain at one of the many sites.

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Colourful Benidorm Pride 2016

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It was a busy day in Benidorm today – firstly with the La Vuelta cycle race this morning, starting stage 20, a 193.2km route which was won by Pierre Latour (ALM) despite many attempts by Britain’s Chris Froome of Team Sky to overtake. But the real excitement was for the Pride Parade, which was scheduled for a 5pm start but was nearer to 6pm before it set off from the Rincon. Hundreds went to great lengths dressing up and getting into the spirit of the occasion – and even Her Majesty made an appearance...in addition to a number of other queens!

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Pride has arrived in Benidorm

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The sixth Benidorm Pride has kicked off and there are plenty of events on up at in Old Town throughout this week. Tomorrow - Wednesday is the official Opening Gala Party at the Mirador with drag queens, local artistes, DJ's, full bar service and best of all - it's FREE! On Thursday there is a ‘White Party’ up at the Mirador, starting at 8pm until 1am and the following night, Friday is the ‘Black Party’ - which will be staged at the Auditorium Julio Iglesias (behind the Town Hall). But what many deem the highlight of the week, the Parade, takes place on Saturday afternoon where glitz, sequins and feathers will be the order of the day!

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Port Benidorm Hotel open for business

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The newly refurbished Port Benidorm Hotel – previously the Dalmatas has undergone a multi million euro transformation and is stunning. It certainly couldn’t be better located – a mere stones throw to the sandy Levante beach and the nightlife of Benidorm... an ideal combination! Now a superior 4 star the first thing which strikes you is the modern open airy feel throughout.

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"Sinatra's Premium" - Benidorm's newest venue

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Benidorm’s newest venue to open is Sinatra’s Premium – a brand new Dinner and Show Bar, located in the Rincon de Loix opposite the Hotel Levante Club. The opening party took place last night, where Manolo proudly showed off the months of hard work that it took to achieve the spectacular result. The 550 sq mt venue has been finished to a very high standard and he knows exactly what does and doesn’t work - having a number of other clubs and bars in the area. But this is different to his other venues in that it will not just be serving drinks but snacks and food throughout the day and ultimately a sit down meal with show in the evenings.

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Benidorm's sunbed scramble

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Reminiscent of a scene from Wacky races or a Carry On film, a video uploaded to You Tube of the daily sunbed sprint at the Flamingo Oasis hotel here in Benidorm has caused much amusement worldwide. It has even made headlines in the daily papers – but rest assured, sadly this is not an isolated incidence, which only occurs there! The Brits even put the Germans to shame, historically renowned for bagging sunbed at the crack of dawn.

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Segway - The fun eco way to see Benidorm

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The Segway originated in America but is now popular worldwide – and Benidorm is no exception. Unlike the mobility scooter, which you sit on and is almost out of control here – the Segway is a 2-wheeled electric vehicle which you stand on... hence doesn't appeal to those that hire mobility scooters purely out of sheer lasiness and as a cheap mode of transport, therefore making it difficult for the genuine users. You will see Segways around the resort but be careful who you rent them from. Just as there are counterfeits with everything these days, be warned that there are also inferior Chinese imitations about.

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The great exchange debate

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Despite repeat advice on changing money, many still continue to use the Bureau de Change at an airport – which offer by far the worse rate possible, almost tantamount to robbery in my eyes. As an example I was at Alicante airport this morning, where there is exchange kiosk beside the rental car section as you exit the baggage reclaim area. On enquiring about today’s rate the response was £1 gets you €1 on “smaller amounts” without elaborating on what signified small! The exchange rate in Benidorm is 1.155 today … at most places.

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Alcohol ban on Jet2 flights

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In a bid to try and tackle disruptive behavior caused by alcohol, Jet2 have announced that they are to stop selling alcohol before 8am across all their routes. The ban will come into force from Monday making them the first European airline to introduce such a measure – but will it realistically make any difference? It is nothing new to read a flight being diverted midway due to a passenger becoming disruptive – with the plane being met authorities to escort them off.

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Midnight fireworks in Altea

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The annual La Olla firework display will light up the sky on Saturday August 13 – it always takes place on the nearest Saturday to 10th August, which marks the end of the local San Lorenzo fiesta.
This year is the thirtieth anniversary of this spectacular event and Altea Town Hall have pledged €30,000 to the organizing committee. It attracts over 40,000 visitors so has a huge beneficial economic impact on the town, with many spending the weekend there.

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Flying with children?

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Low cost carrier Ryanair have announced that from September 1, customers travelling with children under 12 will have to purchase a reserved seat to ensure that they are seated together. But they have reduced the fee from €8 to €4 and the child will be allocated a seat for free. By law children under 12 have to be seated with their parent or guardian, but a number of families take a chance on being randomly allocated seats together, free of charge.

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Benidorm's golden beaches

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One of the main attractions to Benidorm are the stunning golden sandy beaches – and along with the fantastic weather, helps to keeps Benidorm at the top of the holiday destination list for the Brits. Unlike other holiday destinations, Benidorm is blessed with 5 separate sandy beaches, in addition to a number of hidden rocky coves – so there is something for everyone. Each beach has its own personality and attracts different people, but you can be assured that each one is meticulously maintained.

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News Snippets

  • Sad loss +

    British actress Alice Chambers, who played dippy Alice Tinker in BBC's The Vicar of Dibley has died at the age of 53. She also played Honey in the Film Notting Hill with Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts.
  • All Girls +

    Britain's first women-only members club is set to open on March 8, to coincide with International Woem's Day. The club, in Bloomsbury., London will offer a library, exhibition space, meeting rooms, wellness and a beauty area. The bar will stock wines from all-female vineyards and cocktails will be named after famous women. Restricted to over 21's, it will incur an annual membership fee of £750... and already attracted thousands of applicants.
  • £50K cocktail +

    What is probably the worlds most expensive Margarita has gone on sale in Covent Garden, London. For pre-order only it blends two exclusive tequilas, one a £2,000 a bottle 1800 Colección, the juice of white pineapples and limequats and finished with lime caviar. It is served with two security guards on hand, as floating on a pineapple flower is a 4.1 carat diamond from Bond Street jewelers Beards.
  • Tequila shortage +

    The price of your Margarita or Tequila slammer is likely to rise following a shortage of agave, the plant used to make tequila... and it's unlikely to get any better until at least 2021. The plant takes aprox 8 years to mature and harvesting them too early produces a poor quality spirit.
  • Recycling +

    44 per cent of all the plastic bottles used are NOT recycled and 400,000 tons of card is thrown out. But do you know what can and cannot be recycled? The plastic pump dispenser on liquid soap bottles can't yet trigger sprays on cleaning sprays can. Laminated foil pouches can't either - used for crisps and sweet wrappers neither can multi-pack yoghurt pots. Although almost all glass can, cookware cannot as it melts at a different temperature to bottles and jars.
  • Foodies -NOT! +

    Britain tops the list for purchasing ultra processed foods, full of additives, salt and sugar. The most popular brands going into shoppers trolleys include Mr Kipling, Batchelors and McVities. Ultra processed products account for 50.7% of a typical Britons shop whereas in Portugal it is only 10.2%
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Upcoming Events

Sat Mar 03 @09:00 -
Benidorm Half Marathon
Sun Mar 04 @13:00 - 17:00
Doggie Fundraiser at Benidorm Palace
Sun Mar 11 @11:00 - 17:00
International Day in La Nucia
Sat Mar 17 @10:00 -
Mundomar re-opens
Fri Apr 20 @12:00 - 23:00
Elvis Festival - 3 day event
Sat Apr 21 @12:00 - 23:00
Elvis Festival - 3 day event
Sun Apr 22 @12:00 - 23:00
Elvis Festival - 3 day event
Fri Apr 27 @11:00 - 21:00
Benidorm Tattoo Convention

Cigarette Prices

  (per carton)

B&H 49.50€
Berkeley 48.50€
Camel 46.50€
Embassy 51.50€
JPS 44€
L&B 47.50€
Marlboro 51.50€
Mayfair 44€
Silk Cut 49.50€

Tobacco 50gm x10

Golden Virginia 89.50€
Old Holborn 90€

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