Sterling may have taken a Brexit bashing, but it is stronger against many currencies than a year ago, the annual Post Office Travel Money survey has concluded.
Research by the foreign exchange provider found 85% of the Post Office’s 40 top-selling currencies were weaker against sterling at the start of 2020 than a year ago.
Only six – the Russian ruble, Egyptian pound, Thai baht, Costa Rican colon, Canadian dollar and Indonesian rupiah – were stronger.
Moreover, prices are lower than a year ago in 33 of 42 destinations surveyed and have fallen by 10% in 11 of these places.
Further good news is the cost of eight tourist staples, including a three-course meal, a beer and sun cream, has fallen in 33 of 42 worldwide destinations and by more than 10% in a third of these.
Bulgaria’s Sunny Beach bolstered its bargain-basement reputation with the world’s cheapest holiday shopping basket with the eight items costing £30.68.
The same list in the Seychelles totalled £165.10. Post Office sales of the Bulgarian lev rose 17% in July and August, making it “easily the biggest winner” last summer.
Turkey’s Marmaris was the second cheapest destination in Post Office Travel’s Holiday Costs Barometer (£44.15), with sterling worth 20.5% more against the Turkish lira than in January 2019.
Third place Tokyo (£48.21) has overtaken Cape Town as best value long-haul destination, with Cape Town dropping back to sixth place after an 18% price rise.
In contrast, the most expensive European destination was Sorrento, where the basket cost £108.39. The survey found big price increases in Mombasa, (£66.95, up 19.8%), Phuket (£97.64, up 18.3%) and St Lucia (£93.99, up 17.4%).
Post Office Travel Money head of travel Nick Boden said: “With the price falls, holidaymakers should have plenty of choice this year.
In Europe the best deals are likely to be in Bulgaria, Turkey and Portugal, while further afield Japan, Vietnam and Bali are looking like good bets for the bargain-hunter.”
The Post Office’s 20 top-selling currencies are an indicator of travel patterns.
The biggest growth in demand was for the Jordanian dinar, up 60%. There was only one new entrant to the top 20, where the Chinese yuan has replaced the Icelandic krona.
The demise of Wow Air has cut the number of cheap deals to Iceland, while the yuan’s falling value is encouraging more tourism to China.
The proportion of the Post Office’s 40 top-selling currencies weaker against sterling at the start of 2020 year-on-year.
The cost of a basket of tourist staples in Sorrento.
Year-on-year rise in demand for the Jordanian dinar.