Drop in pound means £836m more is taken abroad | moneyfacts.co.uk

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Lieke Braadbaart

Online Writer
Published: 18/07/2017

Savvy holidaymakers are finding different ways to cope with the drop in the value of the pound that followed the EU referendum, with research showing that Brits are set to take £836 million more in spending money on holiday with them compared to last year.

Sterling consequences

Sainsbury's Bank Travel Money's figure of £836 million translates to about £34 extra that each holidaymaker is taking with them, on average. These holidaymakers are hoping this extra cash will offset the fall in sterling, which has caused the pound to be worth around 3% less against the euro and 1% less against the US dollar compared to last year.

Indeed, the sum of the top five currencies bought in the first five months of 2017 through Sainsbury's Bank's travel money service was 26% higher than over the same period last year. Clearly, the pound is now going less far.

As a result, 9% of respondents are choosing to go all-inclusive, while 6% are booking self-catering breaks to try and reduce their costs. Two very different strategies, both designed to reduce the cost of purchases made in foreign currencies.

Additionally, 4% said they will go on fewer excursions while holidaying abroad, and 3% have decided to avoid currency exchange issues altogether by simply holidaying in the UK.

Be more travel-savvy

However, just 22% plan to make some changes to try and get more out of their money this summer. That leaves a whole lot of people who may be unprepared for the increased cost of going abroad this year.

Indeed, 21% of people said they've bought foreign currency at the airport in the past 12 months, totalling an average of £455, despite the airport being one of the least competitive places to exchange currency.

So, to be more travel-savvy, the first thing you might want to do is make sure you have your foreign currency sorted before you reach the airport. To get the most competitive rate, start comparing travel money service providers a couple of weeks before you fly off, and make your move when the currency exchange rate is at its lowest.

Alternatively, you could opt for a prepaid travel or credit card. These options mean you wouldn't have to worry so much about losing your wallet abroad, as you wouldn't need to take out big wads of foreign cash to pay for things on your trip. If you've got your budget tightly in check – and want to keep it that way – then one of the top prepaid cards could be for you. Or, if you're happy to pay the card off once you're back home, you could check out the travel credit card Best Buys instead.

Whatever you decide to do, make sure you're well-prepared before you head off, and that includes taking out a travel insurance policy to secure your luggage, travel arrangements and yourself.


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