Where holidaymakers’ pound goes the furthest

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A strengthening pound has been a boon for holidaymakers over the last year as it’s made many destinations much, much cheaper to visit.Where holiday makers pound goes furthest when travelling

Sterling has risen against many currencies around the world, making the most common activities of travellers – eating out, drinking, taking tourist trips – up to 77% cheaper than a year ago when measured against the local currency.

But where should those hell bent on finding the best value destinations be considering as a holiday destination?

Head for Ukraine, Russia and Japan

A study by Lloyds Bank shows that the three destinations where your British pound has gone up the most against the local currency are Ukraine, Russia and Japan.

Parts of east Ukraine might currently be unstable due to the ongoing difficulties with Russia, but in to the west, in Kiev and surrounding areas, there is no threat to foreigners and in terms of value for money it doesn’t get much better; a pound will currently buy you 77% more in hryvnias (Ukraine’s currency) than it would a year ago.

Russia too has seen a major depreciation of the rouble against sterling, dropping 52%. However, Russia has also seen some fairly hefty inflation internally during the same period, which has wiped out some of those gains, but not all.

Japan might be a long flight, but there’s rarely been a better time to visit the land of the rising sun. The yen has dropped 12% against the pound over the last 12 months.

Closer to home…

Norway and Sweden have, for many years, been very expensive holiday destinations for British travellers. But as the pound has risen just over 10% against both the Norwegian and Swedish krone, now could be a good time to go for those that have always had the yearning to visit.

Gains aren’t set to last

Here are the ten countries with currencies that showed the greatest depreciation against sterling over the 12 months to December 2014.

Experts at Lloyds believe the gains aren’t set to last however, so if you do decide to head for one of the destinations on Lloyds Bank’s list, now could be the time.

The figures are in order of how large the fall has been against the pound, with the name of the currency given after the country, and the percentage change over the period.

Countries with currencies showing the largest fall against sterling December 2013 to December 2014

Ukraine, hryvnia: -77.4%

Russia, rouble: -52.3%

Argentina, peso: -32.5%

Colombia, peso: -12.5%

Seychelles, rupee: -12%

Japan, yen: -11.8%

Serbia, dinar: -11.3%

Norway, krone: -10.4%

Sweden, krone: -10.4%

And don’t forget your travel insurance!

When travelling abroad, you could find yourself in all sorts of financial difficulty if you don’t have any insurance covering your trip.

This is the case for just about anywhere you visit, but perhaps even more so for far flung destinations such as Japan and Russia, where the cost of repatriation, if you or a family member falls ill or are injured, can be astronomical.

Policy Expert

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The views expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Policy Expert.