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Our resident travel guru, Laura Lindsay of Lonely Planet, answers TNT readers' travel questions

Q I’m going to be stopping over for about nine hours in Buenos Aires in November, and I was wondering what top sites to see in such little time.
Kiera, via email

A There are a few things you should consider before planning any sight-seeing.

Assuming that you are flying into Ezeiza Airport (as most international flights do), you need to allow at least an hour each way to get to and from the city centre by taxi. You also need to allow at least two hours to get back through security at the airport as lines are more than often very long.

This leaves you with approximately four to five hours to explore the city itself. I would suggest you choose one region and concentrate on that.

La Boca is on the outskirts of the centre and is one of the city’s most photographed areas. Its brightly coloured corrugated metal houses are synonymous with the city’s energy and excitement. Head to the short street of El Caminito to be at the heart of the action.

Alternatively, head to Florida Avenue. This bustling street in the heart of the city is a great place to start. From here you can easily view the stunning 19th-century French-style shopping centre Galerías Pacíficos and the beautiful main post office building, Correo Central.

Finish up at Plaza de Mayo where the famous pink presidential palace (or Casa Rosada) is located – an essential photo opportunity.

Q Having collected points as part of a frequent flyer programme for several years, I’ve been told they will expire on December 31. I haven’t got enough points to book a free flight, but I do have enough to stay one night at a hotel free of charge. Where shall I go? I live in London and have been thinking of places within the UK as well as Europe.
Ann, via email

A This is a tricky one without knowing a bit more about how much you are prepared to fork out to get to the hotel.

You could opt for luxury accommodation an hour or two away from the city without much additional expense. Oxford, Cambridge, Bath and the Cotswolds are all great options for a weekend away as there is little travel time but you’ll feel a world away from the buzzing city.

Alternatively, you could take the opportunity to stay somewhere in Europe which typically has expensive city centre accommodation – such as  Paris, Rome or Barcelona.

Have a glance at the best deals on Eurostar and skyscanner.net and choose a city which won’t take the majority of the weekend or cost the earth to get to.

Personally, I would opt for Edinburgh; you could take the 7am train from King’s Cross on a Saturday morning and be in the city before lunchtime. The beauty of arriving by train is that you arrive directly into the city centre and can explore this magnificent city straight away.

Readers' tips

Top airport snooze spots in South America

If you’re waiting to board an early morning flight out South America’s airports, I’d advise sleeping in the terminals. Buenos Aires’ local airport has comfortable sofas upstairs, while Santiago’s international airport has wire benches without armrests which double as temporary beds. This avoids checking out of hostels at odd hours only to find transportation to the airport infrequent and possibly unsafe. 
Maria, via email

Free NYC

When in New York, research ‘free days’ for the city’s museums. The Museum of Modern Art, the Guggenheim and the Whitney Museum of American Art all have days on which entry is free. You’ll have to queue around several blocks to get in, but it beats spending hard-earned cash. Also be sure to check out the Brooklyn Museum. Entry is on a ‘suggested donation’ basis, so you’re well within your rights to hand over $1. It holds a big party every first Saturday of the month, too.
Tom, via email


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Buenos Aires: must-sees on a stop-over
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