£2,000 long haul trips now cost Brits an extra £138 as 9% drop in the pound takes its toll on travellers
Britain voted to leave the European Union, and it is travellers that are now paying the price.
Prices up 7%
In the first like-for-like Brexit price comparison research, online holiday company www.holidaysplease.co.uk found that long haul (i.e. non European) holidays for people in the UK have risen by almost 7% since the Brexit vote.
Brexit will cost us £438
We all know that travelling to the EU has become more expensive because of the tumbling pound, but that’s nothing compared to the effect of Brexit on UK travellers’ next long-haul trip. The research found that long haul prices rise 6.9% because of Brexit vote, which equates to a £138 price rise on a £2,000 long haul holiday. That means the UK will, as a nation, spend £483m more a year on long haul holidays, though short haul holidays show small 0.7% price drop.
10-day price hike
Holidays booked by customers in the days leading up to the Brexit vote were then re-priced with the same tour operators 10 days after the Brexit vote. The price hike is in line with almost a 9% drop in the pound versus the dollar in the month after the Brexit vote.
Blame the weak pound
“Usually with long haul holidays tour operators will buy the dollars required to pay the hotel at the time you book,” says Charles Duncombe, director of www.holidaysplease.co.uk. “So if you book your long haul holiday at a time when the pound is weak then your holiday will be more expensive. On the other hand operators who sell European holidays will often reserve their currency at the start of the selling season when they need to put prices in their brochures. This will have been many months ago, before the Brexit vote and so they can keep their prices low.”
Book-up short-haul trips now
“If I could predict where the pound will go over the next 12 months then I need to change jobs,” he continued. “What I can say though is that if you are looking to book a short haul holiday I would probably do it quite quickly before the hedged currency reserves at the short haul tour operators run out.”
Keep an eye on the money markets
However, anyone looking to book a long haul holiday should keep a close eye on the currency markets. “As soon as you see the pound start to strengthen I would book,” says Duncombe. “Most importantly when I do book, I would get a guarantee from my tour operator that they will not change the price after you book. Under travel regulations operators can change your price even after you book if the currency moves by a significant amount. So get that guarantee from them.”