Cheaper or more expensive?

By | Category: Travel tips & opinions

The great getaway has already begun on the continent and in Northern Ireland and Scotland. The usual stories of traffic queues on European pinch points like toll booths, ring rounds around major cities and tunnels have erupted again. There is talk of strikes by airline or airport staff.

What else can it be but the summer holiday season.

This weekend, many English and Welsh state schools will join those private schools which have already broken up.

The busiest holiday period of the year for Britons may not be as perfect as it might be given headlines like that in today’s Financial Times which says that the pound is at a two year low. It should mean that it will be more expensive once Britons get to their holiday destination.

Or so you might be tempted to believe!

But a couple of companies are highlighting items which haven’t increased in price. For example, Skyscanner, the airfare comparison website says that there has been a drop in car hire prices in certain destinations so for those heading to Corfu, Barcelona, Tenerife, Gran Canaria, Reus and Girona in Spain then you should find prices at least 20% cheaper than last year. Even allowing for sterling’s drop against the euro, you will still be ahead compared to 2018.Even if you have opted for a city break holidays, prices in Copenhagen, Florence, Rome, Vienna and Warsaw then a saving of around the 205 mark over 2018 should be able to be found.

From the Post Office’s Family Holiday Report comes evidence that resort prices have fallen in more than half the European resorts surveyed.

At about £32 for a family meal for four including drinks and coffee, Sunny Beach in Bulgaria is over a third cheaper than Marmaris where it will cost you about the equivalent of £50. Sunny Beach prices were about 14% cheaper than last year.

If you are holidaying in Ibiza, take your own sun screen and insect repellent because it will cost the equivalent of about £18 and £9 respectively whereas in the UK it will cost a lot less. Remember to wrap them in plastic before you pack them in the hold baggage just in case the containers leak. Even buying them at the airport in the UK after you have been through passport control will be cheaper than buying them in Ibiza!

Of the most popular destination for Britons, the Post Office suggests that the Algarve in Portugal has seen the biggest drop in prices.

But if you are not holidaying for a week or a fortnight or a month, how will sterling fare during that time? Will, for example, the election of a new Tory party leader and hence prime Minister send sterling up or down or has Boris as PM already been factored into sterling’s price? Will the pound go up or down if Jeremy Hunt is elected?

The answer to these and countless other questions is that nobody knows. You will just have to take pot luck on whether you will save over last year or just have to grin and bear it by having to spend more?

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