Time now to plan for that Winter Getaway

I know summer hasn't even started and already I've booked my winter escape for next year. Those long cold Adelaide winters really get me down. For the past few years I've booked a winter getaway in Darwin, just for a week and the break lines up with the Skycity Triple Crown. 

Darwin in June is just fantastic, warm sunny days around 30 to 32 degrees, usually with a light breeze. Lovely bike paths that run past the water front and wharf precinct . The Mindil Beach markets run on a Thursday & Sunday nights. The outdoor eating and the vibrant night life. Day trips are available down to Litchfield for as little as $99 or multi day trips are also available.

Accommodation can be expensive, but Darwin also has quality Backpackers ,YHA and YMCA multi share rooms for as little as $30 a night. The past few years I've stayed at the Dingo Moon Lodge, a backpackers in Mitchell Street in the heart of the city. Great staff that keep the place nice and tidy. The rooms are air conditioned and you get to meet people from all over the world.

My bike is an essential when in Darwin. This allows me to travel quickly and cheaply around the city. I box up one of my older mountain bikes and put it on the plane. In the box I put in my spare tube, pump & tools. All of my cloths, T-shirt, shorts and thongs go into my carry on luggage. Don't even bother with a long sleeve top, you will never use it. Even at night the temperature may dip to 18 degrees at its coldest.

Tempted? Jetstar has a sale on at the moment. Darwin can be yours for as little as $99 (each way) from Adelaide in June next year. Usual price is $199. 20kg of luggage is $20 each way and to buy your selected seat is $5 each way and to purchase you ticked via visa card will also set you back $17. Still for around $260 its a cheap deal to get out of Adelaide in the middle of winter! You'll be so glad you did.

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Comment by heather on November 4, 2012 at 20:27

Trevor, be aware that if you suffer cycling injuries while interstate, Jetstar might be unwilling to help you. I learnt when returning to Adelaide in Oct-2011 with a broken shoulder plus badly sprained hands, arms and shoulders. I repeatedly asked Jetstar in vain for help with my luggage. By the time I boarded, perspiration from pain was on my face, at which point Jetstar considered off-loading me to repeat the painful process. I made an official complaint to the Australian Human Rights Commission (conciliation rather than arbitration) and Jetstar opted out of the conciliation process. I said that from my point of view it was discriminatory to assist people with leg probs in wheelchairs but refuse to help people with arm probs. Since then a friend travelled with her arm in a sling and found Virgin very helpful. Next time I will not choose to fly with an Australian company.

Comment by Trevor Hill on November 5, 2012 at 8:15

I had a look with interest at the fares for flying back on the Tuesday after the Skycity Triple Crown and the fares have jumped from $99 to $229. Jetstar must have just twigged that everyone is wanting to get back to Adelaide after the race and have bumped up the price.

Heather regarding your comments. It always pays to get insurance when travelling. 1Cover has good pricing on travel insurance. It always pays to double check what the policy covers. 

Comment by heather on November 6, 2012 at 21:12

Trevor, I would get insurance if travelling overseas. I assumed that the Disability Discrimination Act would discourage a travel service in Australia from helping people with more severe disabilities, while refusing to help someone with a relatively minor injury (but still disabling).

In the current Adelaide Review (issue 393 Nov-2012) there is an article that suggests that the DDA encourages companies to wriggle out of helping people with a disability (can opt out of conciliation). Often the victim then gives up, rather than take expensive court action.

Comment by Wayne Horslen on November 11, 2012 at 11:10
Hi Trev, I am moving to Darwin in the new year for 12 months (job relocation). Should catch up. Hopefully by then I would have joined a group by then. Looking foward to the alround decent weather from Wayne (Trott Park)

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