Holidaymakers jetting off to Europe for the holiday season will find the cost of paella and a pint has plummeted thanks to the weak euro.
Debenhams Travel Money surveyed prices in popular euro region resorts to discover how much further our cash will go this year.
While the study found euro prices in bars, shops and restaurants will be the around same as a year ago, the real cost to Britons has dropped by 22% versus the level it was four years ago.
The low value of the euro means that for every £500 changed, holidaymakers are getting almost 80 euros more than a year ago, 100 more than in 2011, and 150 more than in 2009.
On the Costa del Sol, a 500ml local beer will still be priced at 2 euros but for Britons that’s the equivalent of £1.47 whereas Easter last year sun-seekers had to fork out £1.72 for a local pint. A small coffee in a beach side café with a typical price of 1.58 euros is now, when converted to sterling £1.16, some 10p less than last April.
In Greece, which is suffering because of the country’s continuing economic crisis, prices in tourist bars may be down a little on a year ago which means even greater savings. A 3 euro bottle of beer will cost Britons £2.20, compared with £2.49 in 2014.
In Portugal a bottle of Factor 15 suncream is 2 euros more expensive than four years ago, (8.50 euros compared with 6.50 euros) which due to the strength of sterling means in real terms the price is virtually the same as in 2011. A cup of coffee will cost 80p now, whereas a year ago it was 86p.
In Paris, a cup of coffee and a pastry will set you back a typical 3 euros, cut the real price to Britons is £2.21, exactly the same as four years ago, despite the price then being 2.5 euros. It is also 10p cheaper than a year ago when the coffee was 0.20 euros less.
Travel agents and airlines report record numbers of bookings, as holidaymakers seek to take advantage of cheaper breaks with the pound being at a seven year high against the euro.
Debenhams, which consistently offers one of the best exchange rates on the High Street, reported that customer demand for euros over the past four weeks is 75% above that of 12 months ago and has risen by 150% compared to the start of January.
On the money markets £1 will buy 1.36 euros today compared with 1.21 at this time last year, 1.13 in 2011 and only 1.06 in 2009.
Director of Debenhams Personal Finance, Mike Hazell said “The value of the pound against the euro means prices are much cheaper for Britons as the pound goes a lot further. We are certainly seeing more people looking to plan ahead and take advantage of the attractive euro rate so they get most out of their holiday budget.”
Holiday buys in Sterling*
Cup of coffee (café/bar)
Bottle of local beer (café/bar)
Sunscream 200ml SPF15
Evening meal for 2 adults (with glass of wine)
Bottle of still mineral water (supermarket)
Spain (Costa del Sol)
* Prices from Tourist Board average figures. Cost between countries are not necessarily comparable, coffee in Rome is standing at a bar. Price in sterling worked out from money market exchange rate March 2015, March 2014 and March 2011.
Notes to Editors
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