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Wednesday, 30 July 2008

Fuerteventura Blue Flag Beaches for Summer 2008

Five of Fuerteventura’s “best” beaches will be proudly flying the coveted blue flag this summer: Gran Tarajal, Costa Calma, Matorral, Butihono (Pajara) and the beaches of La Oliva have been singled out for the quality of the waters, rescue staff, sands and services as being worthy of the blue flag, which is awarded on an annual basis by the European Federation for the Environment.

This year the distinguished blue flags will be flying in more than thirty countries in Europe, South Africa, New Zealand, Canada and the Caribbean helping tourists unfamiliar with the area to find not only the safest, cleanest, most environmentally friendly beaches but also the beaches where nature and progress have reached the perfect balance.
Not to be left out of the awards, 7 Gran Canarian beaches will also be flying the prestigious Blue Flags this summer. Playa de Mogan, Amadores, San Agustin, Playa del Ingles, Melenara and Las Canteras have all been singled out as worthy. In particular the Port of Mogan won the award for the first time having been designed to allow fresh sea water to circulate in the harbour.

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Tuesday, 29 July 2008


- Three quarters (74%) of first time buyers (FTBs) are shelving plans to buy property in the UK due to the current financial climate
- Nearly half (44%) of FTBs plan to buy abroad instead
- Spain and France are the top choices, followed closely by the USA and Australia

Three quarters of FTBs are abandoning their plans to buy property in the UK due to market instability, with nearly half putting their hopes in property abroad.

Moneycorp’s First Time Buyers Report, which examines the FTB market every two years*, also reveals that a third have been refused a mortgage in the last six months. This statistic backs recent figures released by the Council of Mortgage Lenders, highlighting that the number of mortgage loans to FTBs fell to 17,800 in March, down almost 50% from August last year.

As lending criteria tightens and 100% and 95% mortgages disappear from the market, UK first timers are turning to foreign shores to live their investment dream - where more than four in five think their money will go further.

Spain** continues to be the number one choice for FTBs setting their sights overseas, with France in second place. The USA has pushed into a top-five position, with cash savvy Brits looking to take advantage of the weak Dollar. Australia is in fourth place in 2008 – despite not making an appearance in the top five back in 2006 – and Italy is down from third place in 2006 to fifth place this year.

And it seems this increased interest in overseas markets isn’t just fuelling the Buying Abroad Renting in Britain (BARBies) trend. More than half (55%) of those planning to make a purchase overseas will treat the property as a home as opposed to an investment – up from a third (36%) in June 2006.

“The fact that so many buyers are prepared to get their first taste of home ownership in a foreign land speaks volumes for the state of today’s domestic market conditions,” said Moneycorp spokesperson, Marc Morley-Freer.

“Our research also shows that two in five (41%) FTBs aren’t aware that favourable exchange rates can save them a lot of money when transferring funds abroad – for deposits or mortgage payments. Companies like Moneycorp make it easier – and of course cheaper – to buy overseas, as we’re able to provide better exchange rates than a bank. With more currency, first time buyers have a greater choice when it comes to purchasing their property overseas. “

Notes to editors

The research was conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Moneycorp. OnePoll surveyed 500+ first time buyers in May 2008
* The last Moneycorp First Time Buyers Report was issued in June 2006
** Table 1: Findings from Moneycorp’s First Time Buyers report in 2006 and 2008
2008 top 5 most popular countries with FTBs
2006 top 5 most popular countries with FTBs
34% Spain
27% France
22% USA
12% Italy
18% Australia
6% Cyprus
17% Italy
5% Bulgaria

About Moneycorp

Moneycorp is a trading name of TTT Moneycorp Limited, which has been dealing in foreign exchange since 1979 and last year traded over £10 billion in currencies. The Company has been accredited to ISO 9000 Quality Assurance since 1996, a unique achievement in the foreign exchange industry.

Moneycorp’s Commercial Foreign Exchange Division is the UK's leading foreign exchange specialist and provides tailored services to help companies and individuals save money on their overseas currency transfers.

Clients benefit from a Personal Dealer who they can contact directly and who will provide regular updates on exchange rate movements. They also benefit from extended office hours 6 days a week and 24-hour exchange monitoring. A range of services is available, including spot and forward contracts.

The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) is a significant shareholder in the Group.

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Monday, 28 July 2008

Fuerteventura to Attract Sports Tourism

The island of Fuerteventura is aiming to attract elite sports tourism. A private initiative has taken the first steps by building an Olympic pool at the Playitas Grand Resort as reported in our last newsletter.

The new pool, opened last Thursday by Mario Cabrera, President of Fuerteventura government has been approved by the German team that will participate in the Olympic Games will also be used by English, Irish and Scandinavian teams in their preparation for Beijing. The pool is 50 meters long, and has eight lanes, an underground gallery for observing swimming technique and seats for about 300 people it is open daily for the public.
The government of the Canary Islands has also published new regulations allowing for the introduction of up to seven new racetrack gambling facilities at the islands’ popular tourist resorts including Fuerteventura.

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Thursday, 10 July 2008

Flights from Bournemouth to Fuerteventura

Bournemouth-based airline Palmair has been named by consumer group Which? as a contender for its Best Airline Award. Despite having just one airplane in its fleet, the carrier made it into the shortlist alongside such global names as Singapore Airlines, Air New Zealand and India's Jet Airways. Which? Holiday editor Lorna Cowan explained that the award solely recognises good service practices in the industry, and does not take into account the size of the airline."Palmair may be small, but it punches above its weight and proves that short-haul airlines really can keep their customers satisfied," she asserted. Cowan singled out minimal check-in times and quality in-flight food and entertainment as being two of the main criteria for making it into the final list of nominees.Palmair presently flies to Fuerteventura, Lanzarote, and Tenerife as well as other European destinations.

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Monday, 7 July 2008

Spanish Lifestyle – a safe and affordable investment

British people are increasingly buying homes in Spain in order to take advantage of its lifestyle, an expert has said. According to Paul Bradley of the Spanish Property Owners Guild, the country is a safe and affordable place in which to live or own a holiday home. Spain was described as an easily accessible destination where people can enjoy an outdoors lifestyle and a rich culture.
Mr Bradley added that the country appeals to older people in particular, as it is similar to how Britain used to be, only with better weather. He commented: "It reminds many baby boomers of how the UK was in their childhood: few rules, no cameras, little street violence and no binge drinkers."
According to the Association of International Property Professionals, Spain is still the most popular foreign market among British property buyers. The country was said to account for more than a quarter of the overseas property market in 2007.

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Island Ferry Link to Morrocco

The ferry link to Morroco had a bit of a disaster recently after it sank when it encountered strong winds and rough seas off the Moroccan coast.All 113 passengers and crew were safely rescued thanks mainly to the help of local fisherman.The Moroccan harbour had undergone major improvements to facilitate the ferry operation and the loss of the ferry is a huge blow financially to the town of Tafaya and the hopes of Fuerteventura becoming a major distribution point for billions of dollars of development money aimed at Africa.
At a meeting attended by the Canarian President Paulino Rivero, representatives of the Canarian and Moroccan port authorities and the ferry operator Naviera Armas it was agreed that the reopening of the service was imperative before the end of the year. This will mean further improvements to the port in Tarfaya, though all the facilities for Puerto del Rosario are now complete and just require Spanish and EU authorisation. Puerto del Rosario Mayor said “It is vital that, while the work is being carried out, the line remains open”.

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Friday, 4 July 2008

Ryan Air Birmingham to FUERTEVENTURA

No frills carrier Ryanair Holdings PLC is opening new routes from Birmingham to Fuerteventura, Alicante, Derry, Katowice, Kaunas, Krakow, Palma, Malaga and Murcia this October.

A further 3 new routes will also be opened from East Midlands to Fuerteventura, Faro and Prague. Bridget Dowling said: "With services to Fuerteventura running three times a week passengers in the East Midlands area can now enjoy an even greater choice of low fare destinations. Fuerteventura, part of the Canary Islands is becoming well known to those seeking a sunny winter retreat and with independent properties now available for rental it joins the other better known islands such as Gran Canaria for cheaper independent travelers using non tour operator carriers such as Ryanair.

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Thursday, 3 July 2008

Worldcup Watersports Fuerteventura

With the wind in their sails. The world’s 350 top windsurfers and kiteboarders are coming to Fuerteventura for the 23rd Windsurfing & Kiteboarding World Cup.
When Fuerteventura calls, they all come. The island, situated in the Canaries, has got the wind the windsurfers and kiteboarders need, plus there’s the bonus of white sandy beaches, blue skies and summer-like temperatures.René Egli, initiator and organiser of the World Cup says, “I’m very pleased that, with the Windsurfing & Kiteboarding World Cup, we are able to offer not just an annual sporting highlight, but also an event of increasing interest to spectators and the media. The interest in windsurfing and kiteboarding as a spectacular, clean sport, in tune with nature, is greater every year.”And from 18th July to 2nd August 2008 on Fuerteventura, windsurfers and kiteboarders will try to measure up in 5 different events with world championship status. As ever on Fuerteventura, the spectators are right up close to the action. They can make direct contact with the riders. There is also plenty to keep body and soul together and a wide-ranging program of related events. Spectators can chill on the beach with drinks and music in a 1,000 m² lounge area whilst watching the ongoing competitions. In the evenings, thousands of tourists, locals and, for the prize-giving ceremonies, riders will mingle at the legendary World Cup parties in the 2,000 m² party marquee.

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