Families hoping to swap the UK autumn for a sunshine break abroad during half term will need to do their holiday homework to secure the best value, according to the Post Office Travel Money Half Term Barometer.
Research by the UK’s largest provider of foreign currency into resort costs and package prices for half term getaways to 12 resorts worldwide has revealed that swapping destinations could save thousands of pounds.
As sterling fell in value again, Post Office Travel Money is advising families looking for late availability deals to swap to a destination where both resort costs and package prices are low. By doing so, the Post Office research found that a family of four could more than halve their costs on a European trip to £1,570 (Costa del Sol) instead of £3,581 (Lanzarote) – saving over £2,000.
Travelling further afield to even warmer climes, the research revealed that families could save up to £4,402 by doing their homework. A week in Phuket cost £2,830 including meals and drinks while a trip to Cancun weighed in at over £7,231.
Andrew Brown of Post Office Travel Money said: “Short supply of packages to some half term destinations – among them Cancun and other Mexican resorts – has a lot to do with the high price of holidays but it is not the only factor. Once you multiply the daily cost of meals and drinks for a week, families can expect to add several hundred pounds to their holiday budget. That’s why it’s important to do the math and calculate the full cost before booking. There are still great bargains to be struck but canny travellers need to factor in all the costs.”
Top of the swaps
Sliema: £2,448; Paphos: £2,653
The October temperature is higher in the Eastern Med than in Portugal or Spain where Sliema in Malta (21º) pips Paphos (22º) for third place in the Post Office barometer table. The cost of tourist staples in Paphos (£428) is lower than in Sliema (£472) but the Cyprus package price is around £250 higher.
Tenerife: £2,830; Lanzarote: £3,581
In the Canary Islands swap Lanzarote (23º) for Tenerife ((22º). Higher package prices for Lanzarote over half term make it over £750 more expensive for a family week away.
Phuket: £2,829; Tenerife: £2,830; Lanzarote: £3,581
Exotic holidays to long haul resorts can be cheaper than European breaks. Phuket in Thailand (28º) emerged as cheaper than either of the Canary Islands in the Post Office Travel Money survey – although only marginally more expensive than Tenerife.
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