Wondering where to go now the dollar is low?
New research from travel behemoth Expedia has revealed that, despite plummeting exchange rates, some countries still represent good value for travel-obsessed Australians.
And while the world may no longer be our delicious oyster, you shouldn’t have to resort to anything crazy like planning a domestic holiday just yet.
Managing Director of Expedia Australia and New Zealand, Georg Ruebensal, believes Aussies are smart travellers who chase value for money.
And, “whilst the dollar may not be as strong as it has been in the past, Aussies are still in an excellent position to get out there and tick off destinations on their bucket list”, he said.
The Expedia Value Tracker report compares the average cost of flights and accommodation against the performance of the Aussie dollar against major global currencies, to work out which destinations represent the best value.
Here’s a summary of how Australia’s favourite holiday destinations stack up.
The Good Ol’ US of A
There’s no getting around it, a trip to the US is going to set you back quite a bit more than it did 12 months ago.
The Aussie dollar has fallen 21 per cent against the US dollar in the last year, which puts significant pressure on your hip pocket when it comes to booking accommodation (and day-to-day holiday expenses).
This doesn’t seem to be deterring travellers though, with demand for US holidays actually up compared to this time last year. One reason for this is that flight costs to the US have decreased by around 10 per cent.
Budget conscious travellers keen for a North American escape are better off focusing their attention a little further North.
Flights to Canada, the land of ice hockey, maple syrup and more, are 6 per cent cheaper than they were last year, and the Australian dollar has only dropped 6 per cent relative to the Canadian dollar.
A Trip Across the Ditch
Out of Australia’s favourite international destinations, New Zealand is the only place where the Australian dollar actually goes further than it did a year ago.
The exchange rate is up around 4 per cent compared to last year, while flights are around 5 per cent cheaper at an average of $463. Meanwhile, an average night’s accommodation will set you back around $180.
Sounds like now is the perfect time to get to know our friendly (and quirky) neighbours across the ditch. Choice.
Europe is a mixed bag at the moment, with multiple currencies meaning some destinations are much more affordable than others.
The Australian dollar has fallen 12 per cent against the British Pound but only 3 per cent against the Euro, and has actually gained ground against the Russian Ruble and the Norwegian Krone (if vodka and fjords are more your thing).
The good news it that the average costs of flights are down across the board. A trip to the UK is around 13 per cent cheaper (although accommodation costs are up about 9 per cent), while flights to Italy and France are down 10 per cent.
It sounds like bad news when it comes to our favourite Asian destinations.
The Aussie dollar is down 21 per cent against the Chinese Renminbi, 16 per cent against the Thai Baht, 14 per cent compared to the Singaporean dollar, and 8 per cent against the Fijian dollar.
Flight and accommodation costs have generally risen across the board, too. But the value of the Australian dollar has fallen significantly in many of our favourite Asian destinations, keep in mind that money often stretches much further in these countries too.
That means they’re still a pretty amazing option for travellers on a budget.
The Cost of Australia’s Favourite Travel Destinations
Join our newsletter for your free copy of A Beginner’s Guide to Investing in Shares