The schools are out and the holiday season is upon us, so what better excuse to indulge in a much-needed break in the sun? A holiday is always going to involve splashing the cash, but it seems that this year holidaymakers are planning on really treating themselves.
Summer fever is well and truly upon us according to a new survey by Noddle. Its survey found that 41% of respondents are planning on spending more on their holiday this year, with a third (29%) intending to siphon off over £2,000 for their holiday in the sun, while another 23% were planning to spend between £750 and £1,500.
Many sun-seekers were also planning on extending their holidays to get some extra relaxation time. Research by Sainsbury's Bank Travel Money found that one in three (32%) respondents were planning to spend an average of six extra days abroad on holiday this summer, an extension that will also add to the cost of the summer budget.
But why are so many Brits happy to splash more cash on their summer break? Well, it all boils down to confidence – Noddle's research found that 33% of survey respondents feel more financially secure than they did last year, which may explain why many people are loosening the purse strings. The excellent exchange rates between sterling and the euro may also be playing a part, as Simon Taylor of Sainsbury's Bank points out: "The fact that sterling is worth more against the euro than last summer could explain why many people are planning to spend more time and money on their summer holidays this year."
However, although many Brits are increasing their holiday spending, this doesn't mean that they aren't on the hunt for good deals. Sainsbury's Bank's research revealed that four in 10 respondents (21%) were intending to use all-inclusive packages to keep their costs down, while another 16% said that they would take advantage of discounts and promotions. Another 11% of savvy holidaymakers said that they would make use of loyalty cards, while 9% would turn to vouchers and coupons to cut the cost of their break in the sun.
Another interesting finding of Noddle's research was that 29% of Brits questioned said that they had been planning for their holiday by saving money over the year. Indeed, only 5% said that they would be covering the cost of their break with credit cards, so although many are planning on spending more this year, their confidence doesn't go so far as to borrow in order to afford it.
So how much are you planning to spend on your summer break this year? If you're feeling more confident about your finances, take advantage of it and make the most of your money. As mentioned earlier, exchange rates between sterling and euro are very attractive right now, but this doesn't mean that you will get the same good deal everywhere. To truly get the best rates, shop around and make comparisons, and whatever you do, don't exchange your money at the airport!
To keep your budget in check, you may also like to think about a travel card. A pre-paid card can be loaded up while you are in the UK and then used abroad to pay for goods and services. Alternatively, you can apply for a travel credit card. They work like regular credit cards minus the expensive foreign usage fees, so if you want to pay for things on credit, they can be a cost-effective option.
Finally, don't cut costs by ignoring the importance of suitable travel insurance. This can be invaluable if your holiday gets cancelled for whatever reason, or if you need medical help during your holiday. Shop around for good deals and compare them on a like-for-like basis to ensure that you have all the cover you need.
Disclaimer: Information is correct as of the date of publication (shown at the top of this article). Any products featured may be withdrawn by their provider or changed at any time.
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