Together Week Ibiza Review: Are Package Holidays Ever Worthwhile?

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As Together Week have just released their early bird Ibiza packages for next year, I thought it was time to do a review of the experience I had with them in June earlier this year (2016). While it seems a little too good to be true, rest assure it’s not a scam. When we first saw a package for five nights in Ibiza for £199, we were convinced it was a hoax and spent days googling different reviews to try to put our minds at rest. It’s completely trustworthy. The organization was pioneered in 2011 and they also run similar packages to Majorca and Barcelona.

It is good value for money, but don’t let that fool you into thinking that you’ll pay the £239* and that’ll be your trip paid for. Aside from all of the add-ons (with entry to the clubs averaging around €30-40), the transport to various clubs is also going to cost you. Together Week provide shuttle buses to the venues, but these aren’t free. The drink prices in clubs are also ridiculous. As if the entry prices weren’t enough, we couldn’t help but laugh when we were charged €18 for a tiny bottle of water. The water from the tap comes from the sea, so there’s no escaping succumbing to the ludicrous prices unless you manage to sneak in your own bottle. It’s worth a try, the worst they can do is confiscate it and then you’ve only lost €1. Alcoholic drinks are even more extortionate so your best bet is to make sure you pre-drink A LOT before you go out.

* Looking at their website, the prices for 2017 seem to have risen in comparison to previous years, no idea why. This is also the cheapest package, prices vary throughout the season.

ACCOMODATION

We were so lucky with our accommodation. We had booked our package for three people, but they gave us a four person room. Two practically adjoining rooms, with four beds, and a balcony (we paid about £20 extra for the balcony). Considering the price, it was definitely worth it. The hotel was decent, and there was a breakfast buffet included in the price. There was also a small pool, and bar/restaurant. It was annoying that they didn’t let you take any of your own drinks/food to the pool, obviously to encourage you to use their facilities, but prices weren’t too bad. Next year, I plan to stay somewhere like Jet Apartments or Ushuaia, but it was comforting to be able to relax by the pool during the day before heading back out again at night. I imagine at the more party oriented places, chill time is a laughable concept!

SCHEDULE

SUNDAY

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Arrived and checked in, after accidentally being taken to the wrong hotel from the airport. Settled into our room.

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They have a ‘Welcome Party’ by the pool which we decided to admire from our balcony as it didn’t look very busy. At around 1am we paid an additional €40 to join them to go to Space Sundays.

MONDAY

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During the day we attended the Holi colour paint party wich was included with the package. Make sure you bring clothes with you that you don’t mind potentially ruining! It was staged in an abandoned zoo (the place that is usually home to Zoo Project).

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Before
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After

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There was the option to go to with the group to Sankeys for an additional price, but instead we went to the strip in San Antonio which was conveniently located a five minute walk from the hotel. I noticed this drew more of a younger crowd than the club scene in Ibiza and had more of a Magaluf feel to it. My favourite bars were definitely the 80s/90s bar and Soul City.

TUESDAY

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We skipped the Pool Party at Jet Apartments (which I regret now) to head to the beach and check out the cute stalls and bars along the harbour.

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Tuesday night is Together at Amnesia (tickets included with the package) and we got to see Rudimental, Gorgon City and Wilkinson. Probably my favourite night of the week, despite the stress beforehand. Basically, there was a large group of us who were waiting at the allocated time to depart to Amnesia and the promoters had already left. Thankfully, we still managed to get in, but other people weren’t so lucky as they only had a limited amount of wristbands when we finally caught up with them at the door.

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WEDNESDAY

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There was a Boat Party during the day-time but we decided to skip this as there was a lengthy delay in the boat arriving and it would’ve meant us missing the Ibiza Rocks event we’d planned to go to later that evening. We spoke with the promoters before making this decision, to check that we wouldn’t miss out on too much but compared to other boat parties, it did seem somewhat lacking. It was my first time in Ibiza, so I’m not the best of judges, but others said that in comparison to those ran by the likes of Ibiza Rocks, that it was kind of lacklustre. For example, they didn’t provide any activities alongside, such as the usual banana boat rides

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We could’ve gone to Pacha (price included in package) but instead we decided to head to Ibiza Rocks to watch Fuse OD and Lethal Bizzle.

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THURSDAY

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Ocean Beach Club Party – we skipped this to go and hang out at Ushuaia early in preparation for the DJ set later on.

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Sunset Strip was included for Thursday evening but as mentioned, we decided to purchase the add on to go to Ushuaia instead.

FRIDAY

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Checked out and spent the last few hours by the pool before flying home in the evening. Would definitely recommend getting a later flight home so you don’t have to stress about an early departure when you’re out on Thursday night. Maybe have a drink on the plane home to soothe your post-holiday blues. Or just refuse to except that it’s over, and continue your self delusion by heading back out the minute you land back home (convenient, since you fly back on a Friday).


FINAL THOUGHTS

Overall, it was a great week, but you do have to be very organized. I suppose we could’ve taken more advantage of the free events on offer, but a lot of the time we simply weren’t aware that a daytime event had already started and by then, it was too late to join. Make sure you double-check all of the event times and departure schedules of shuttle buses as they can be subject to change. The promoters can be a little flaky and won’t take responsibility for those who lag behind or misunderstand instructions.

The atmosphere was pretty good, but it wasn’t as sociable as I expected it to be. Even if we were taken somewhere as a group, on arrival everyone went their separate ways. The promoters definitely could’ve done more to encourage more of a group mentality. While the opening parties were still amazing, next time I’d definitely opt to go later in the season when it’s in full flow and there are better acts.

If you’re interested, head to Together Week’s Website to secure your tickets here

Bring on Ibiza 2017!

Interrailing: Rite of Passage or Waste of Time?

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Let’s all take a moment to thank the old Gods and the new that interrail.eu have confirmed that Brexit will not affect our eligibility to obtain an InterRail pass. For many teenagers, European and otherwise, InterRailing (or for the latter group, EurRail) will be their first experience traveling without their parents. For me, it was at least the first extended period of travel that I’d taken without my family. I’d been to Paris for a week, but that didn’t seem like such a big deal. I just had to take the Eurostar, and everything was pretty easy. With InterRailing, you’re thrown into taking flights, planning an itinerary and booking multiple places to stay.

For those who don’t know what it actually is, an InterRail pass is one ticket which gives you access to Europe’s largest network of trains and ferries for up to one month. You can either opt to buy a pass which covers transport in one European country, or the global pass which covers 30 countries. This is arguably the biggest perk of InterRailing – being able to see so many places in such a short amount of time.

Take our route for example:
We flew from LONDON, ENGLAND →

MADRID, SPAIN (two nights in The Hat Hostel, our favourite hostel of the trip – spacious, clean and complete with a rooftop bar)

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The Hat Hostel
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Plaza Mayor, Madrid

BARCELONA, SPAIN (three nights in Hostel Tierra Azul)

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Tierra Azul
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Parc Güell, Barcelona

From which we spent over 24 hours on various trains →

BUDAPEST, HUNGARY (four nights – one in a random hostel we stumbled into on the night we arrived earlier than expected and then three in Infinity Party Hostels)

St Stephen's Basilica
St Stephen’s Basilica

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VIENNA, AUSTRIA (one night in Hostel Ruthensteiner)

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Schönbrunn Palace

PRAGUE, CZECH REPUBLIC (two nights in Miss Sophie’s)

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View of Charles Bridge and Prague Castle

BERLIN, GERMANY (two nights in Lett’em Sleep Hostel – they really do let you sleep, not recommended for those looking for a more sociable experience)

Berlin Wall
Berlin Wall
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The Reichstag building

AMSTERDAM, THE NETHERLANDS (two nights in the White Tulip Hostel)

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One of many pretty bicycle strewn bridges

From where we flew back → LONDON.

Due to chaotic nature of InterRailing, it is unlikely that you’ll get bored. How can the novelty of a place wear off when you’re only there for a few days before being whisked off to somewhere new? Of course, this has its downsides. It’s unrealistic to expect to achieve anything more than a basic understanding of a location if you’ve only got a couple of days to spare. This is fine if you just want to sample a variety of places and then plan your future travels based on which ones you found most appealing. If you don’t particularly like a place, then you’re free to simply move on. However, it won’t appeal to you if you’re the kind of person who likes to take their time with getting to know a place and doesn’t like to be rushed around.

Another positive aspect is that you’ll probably be able to cover most of the touristic sightseeing in any given European city in a few days. You should do your research though as some places require longer than others. For example, two nights in Amsterdam was just about manageable, where as two nights in Prague was nowhere near enough. We went out both nights and were pretty exhausted during the day. This caused us to do the majority of our sightseeing at 5am on the last morning, guilt stricken, having just come out of Karlovy Lazne and realizing just how scenic Prague is. The streets were empty and the sunrise was magical, but I didn’t feel like I had gotten as much out of my time there as I could’ve done, leading me to go back to Prague last December.

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Charles Bridge
Prague at sunrise
Prague at sunrise

It is also important to establish what you want to get out of the trip especially if you’re going with someone else. Europe has so much to offer so it is essential to ensure that you’re on the same page. It’s not going to work out if you want a cultural few weeks peppered with art galleries and exhibitions while they are planning to focus on Europe’s nightlife. It is hard to get the sightseeing-partying balance right, especially if you’re only in a place for a couple of days, but it’s not impossible. Since my InterRail experience, I’ve learned to try to get the majority of the more physically demanding sightseeing completed on the first day so you can go out in the evening and not worry about an early start. Then, the next day it’ll be easier to cope with a hangover if you’re not doing anything too strenuous.

Most importantly, DO YOUR RESEARCH. We wandered aimlessly around Vienna in the completely wrong district, assuming Schönbrunn Palace was all it had to offer and writing it off as rather boring. We didn’t even notice that the public can enter the palace! It wasn’t until I revisited Vienna with my family that I realized just how dynamic it is, making it one of my current favourite European cities. It’s always good to go with the flow and be spontaneous, but have a rough idea of what the place has to offer, and if you can learn a few phrases in the local lingo, even better.

Visit InterRail.eu to view example itineraries and plan your trip