Aussies wasting travel money

Australian travellers are wasting holiday money on avoidable travel expenses, a new survey has found.

Bad habits, laziness, withdrawing cash from credit card accounts at overseas ATMs, leaving flight bookings until the last minute and an unwillingness to adopt new technology that sidesteps fees are the main reasons almost nine in 10 Aussies are basically throwing money away.

In fact, just 11 per cent of the InsureandGo survey respondents said they had never been stung by easily avoidable expenses.

According to the survey of 1000 Aussie travellers, 49 per cent admitted to withdrawing cash from an overseas ATM, while 39 per cent exchanged money at an airport, even when faced a mark-up of up to eight per cent compared to non-airport kiosks.

Over one quarter of respondents admitted to not using a cash passport which typically locks in exchange rates prior to departure; a quarter also said they paid a high price for last-minute flights, when they could have booked them much earlier, and over one in five did not compare accommodation prices online before booking. Others were happy to pay excess baggage costs when they could have reduced bag weights, many paid unnecessary car rental excess reduction charges, or for GPS navigation units when they could have easily used their smartphones.

“We know how much Aussies value a getaway, so it’s important that they do their research and plan before they travel, to ensure they don’t go over budget before they reach their destination,” said InsureandGo managing director Raphael Bandeira.

“For instance, paying up to $40 a day to reduce the excess on your car insurance is a prime example of an unnecessary cost.

Mr Bandeira said much unnecessary spending was motivated by convenience.

“When you’re on holidays, you often want the quickest and easiest method of doing things, which can often be more costly,” he said.

“Other times, I think it’s due to a lack of education and understanding by Aussies about ways they can save money on travel.”

Are you guilty of these travel spending no-nos? How many times have you paid the price of convenience? Or is it just part of travelling?

Related articles:
Seven travel money wasters
How to stretch your holiday money
How to save on a road trip

Written by Leon Della Bosca

Leon Della Bosca has worked in publishing and media in one form or another for around 25 years. He's a voracious reader, word spinner and art, writing, design, painting, drawing, travel and photography enthusiast. You'll often find him roaming through galleries or exploring the streets of his beloved Melbourne and surrounding suburbs, sketchpad or notebook in hand, smiling.
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