As The Pound Struggles Make Sure You Get The Best Deal On Your Holiday Travel Money

If you’re about to head off on holiday the bad news is that the Pound is struggling against many of the most popular currency destinations which means you’ll have to work harder to get the best deal on your holiday travel money.

Holiday Travel MoneyAnalysis from M&S Money shows the value of the pound has slumped against five of the UK’s top 10 most popular currency destinations1 in the last year.

As the analysis shows, sterling has dropped by 9.5% against the euro for the year-to-date, a drop that many Brits will feel the effects of as holiday in countries using the Euro.

The Pound has also dropped 17% against the Swiss franc and more than 15% against the Australian dollar, as well as over 5% against the South African rand.

If you’re travelling to Turkey though you will be pleased to know that the pound has gained 12% against the lira – perhaps not surpising therefore that the Turkish lira has become the third most popular currency purchased in 2011 to date.

Another good destination to be heading for is Egypt as sterling has gained over 11% against the Egyptian Pound. It has also strengthened against the US Dollar and the United Arab Emirate Dirham.

James Yerkess, Head of Travel Money at M&S Money, commented: “It is essential to plan your spending overseas to make sure you get as much value out of your holiday money as possible, particularly as commission charges can have a significant impact on your spends.”

With help from James here are some top tips to ensure you get the best deal on your holiday travel money:

  • Always research the rates on offer and remember not all providers offer the same rate in-store and online – If you’re getting your currency on the high street make sure you check the in-store rate
  • Leave enough time to arrange your travel money – airport exchange rates are often very poor so leaving it to the last minute will inevitably leave you out of pocket
  • Check what currency is available – use to a bureau with a large number of currencies on demand
  • Ensure you have a variety of note denominations, including smaller notes to pay for such as taxis and tipping once you arrive

MoneyHighStreet comments: “With the expectation that holidaymakers will spend more whilst abroad this year it’s vital to do what you can to get the best deal on your holiday travel money.

“As with most personal finance matters these days it pays to shop around and take time to research what’s on offer.

“As well as picking up on the tips above, consider using a prepaid currency card or potentially enlist the help of a currency exchange broker.”

1 M&S currency sales, January to May

Position 2010   2011
1 EUR Euro EUR Euro
2 USD US Dollar USD US Dollar
3 AUD Australian Dollar TRY Turkish Lira
4 CAD Canadian Dollar AUD Australian Dollar
5 TRY Turkish Lira CAD Canadian Dollar
6 EGP Egyptian Pound AED United Arab Emirate Dirham
7 AED United Arab Emirate Dirham CHF Swiss Franc
8 CHF Swiss Franc EGP Egyptian Pound
9 ZAR South African Rand THB Thai Bhat
10 THB Thai Bhat ZAR South African Rand

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