The recent headline-grabbing economic turbulence has done little to dampen Britons’ appetite for holidays overseas, according to figures from Tesco Bank.
In early summer 2013, the financial services provider published statistics that showed nearly half (46%) of British households expect to travel abroad as much as, or more than, they did five years ago.
Age seems to increase the amount holidaymakers are willing to spend, with cash-strapped 18 to 24-year-olds spending an average of £1,062 per year on holidays, rising to £1,527 across all age groups, and £1,718 for 55 to 64-year-olds.
Beach holidays are still the biggest reason for Brits to go abroad, accounting for 38% of people’s favourite types of getaway.
Close behind are city breaks, which 11% of people say are their favourite types of trip, giving them a chance to witness how other European countries’ residents live and work, away from the more tourist-orientated coastal resorts.
Doug Gowan, head of travel money at Tesco Bank, says: “Our market research has identified that although Brits are watching their spending, holidays abroad are still a priority for them.”
For holidaymakers on a tight budget, there are several options that can help to keep the cost of a break down.
The type of accommodation is a classic example – go self-catering, and you can pay less upfront, although you’ll need to make sure you budget for meals once you are at your destination.
Cutting down on the number of nights you stay can work too, and this is where city breaks are often popular, as they can allow you to make the most of a weekend, rather than a full week or fortnight’s holiday.
Exchange money well in advance of your holiday, at a favourable exchange rate, and avoid airport bureaux de change, to get the most foreign currency for your budget.
Also avoid spending on a credit card – including making cash withdrawals – to remove the risk of facing fees for using your card abroad, not to mention the chance of having it blocked by your bank due to activity outside of your normal spending pattern.
With the average annual spend across all age groups standing in four figures, you could be forgiven for thinking you are the only household on a tight budget.
But the research found 49% of travellers take the exchange rate into account when deciding where to go – demonstrating that the real-terms cost of living has an impact on almost the majority of British tourists’ travel plans.