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Stronger pound boosts holidaymaker wallets

Thursday 5th August 2010
The strengthening pound will give holidaymakers a much needed boost in their spending money this summer.

Despite this, many are squandering the advantage by not getting the best deal on their exchange rate, according to research from Currencies.co.uk.

Almost a third of us (29% or 13.9 million people) will be holidaying in the euro zone this summer, spending an estimated £702 each in shops, bars and restaurants. This excludes the cost of accommodation, car hire and flights.

According to Currencies.co.uk, last summer £702 stretched to just €815 but this year a much improved exchange rate will see holidaymakers receiving as much as €871, an extra €56 each.

Despite benefiting from an improved exchange rate, more than two million holidaymakers (15%) stand to lose out by withdrawing their euros from overseas cash machines as they are likely to be hit with multiple charges.

And a further 386,000 people (3%) plan to buy their euros at the airport, where they typically will be stung by the highest commissions and poorest exchange rates.

While the majority (57%) of holidaymakers will look to the high street to exchange their holiday money, according to Currencies.co.uk, the difference between exchange rates offered by high street banks and specialist foreign currency providers is around 6%.

In August last year the pound bought an average of 1.162 euros, and falling even further over the rest of the year. Since March of this year, sterling has gained significant ground, reaching an 18-month high of 1.2391 against the euro at the end of June as the sovereign debt crisis continues to erode confidence in the single currency.

Currencies.co.uk Director Stephen Hughes said: "With sterling recovering some of its strength against the ailing single currency, Brits holidaying in euro zone countries will feel much better off after the painful experiences of 2009. But these gains can easily be wiped out if holidaymakers don’t shop around for the best deals on exchange rates and commission. To avoid being charged over the odds, people should look beyond high street providers, cash machines and airports and use a specialist currency provider."

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Mike Jones

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Added by Snowy on 2011-07-03 09:55:01

I rekocn you are quite dead on with that.
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