Strengthening pound could make your holiday money go further


Since the UK voted to leave the European Union, the pound has struggled to keep up against currencies across the globe.

The country’s decision to back Brexit has had a knock-on effect with holidaymakers who have been feeling the pinch when they visit destinations in Europe and further afield. However, there appears to be a little light at the end of the tunnel as the pound has enjoyed a strong resurgence in recent months.

Figures from Post Office Travel Money have revealed that sterling has made gains against the dollar, the Turkish lira and the Russian rouble.  The Post Office’s Holiday Money Index for January-March 2018 highlighted that the US dollar is down 14.7 per cent against sterling year-on-year which is good news for holidaymakers looking to jet off to the US, Caribbean and Middle East where the currencies are fixed to the dollar.

While 18 of the 20 currencies that had fallen by 11 per cent or more were long haul destinations, the pound enjoyed its biggest year-on-year gain against the Turkish lira, up by 27.7 per cent. There is also good news for football supporters heading to Russia for the 2018 World Cup this summer as the pound was up 25.8 per cent against the rouble.

Post Office Travel Money’s Andrew Brown explained that British holidaymakers are now becoming savvier with their destination decisions. He explains there has been an increased focus on countries like Thailand where the pound is 4.2 per cent stronger against the Thai baht than it was in April 2017.

However, Mr Brown added that Europe is still a favourable market as sterling makes a tentative recovery following the significant fall contributed by the Brexit vote.

“Sterling has been rising in value against European currencies in the past month and it may be that holidaymakers planning European trips are holding off changing money to see whether the pound rises further,” he explained.

“On the other hand, the surge in long haul currencies may be an indication that canny travellers are travelling to destinations further afield after reports of rising Eurozone prices.”

While sterling is currently 1.7 per cent weaker against the euro year-on-year it has bounced back 3.5 per cent compared to its year-low in March. This has seen holidaymakers turn to countries like Croatia and Turkey where both the kuna and Turkish lira offer much better value for money.

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