Is the slumping Australian dollar putting a halt to your wanderlust? Well, it shouldn’t because there are still several travel destinations that make for affordable holidays.
“The Aussie dollar is great value to currencies such as the Euro and the Yen, and most of South East Asia is still affordable for us to visit”, says Paul Gorman, General Manager of travel site LuxuryEscapes.com, which specialises in affordable five-star holidays.
“The more you can pay for your holiday in Aussie dollars before you leave Australia, the more you can save. So that means considering a travel package with as many inclusions as possible, such as breakfasts, meals, spa treatments and airport transfers”, he advises.
According to Gorman, countries that are more expensive to visit, due to the falling dollar, include the US and New Zealand.
“However, we have to remember the Aussie dollar is still relatively strong. Yes, it was very strong for the past three years, and whilst it has fallen against some currencies, we still have a currency that makes for great travelling”, Gorman adds.
Here, he lists eight destinations that offer great value for Aussies.
Vietnam is becoming increasingly popular with Australians as a holiday destination, but the prices in the country haven’t caught up with its popularity, even though our dollar has fallen slightly against the dông.
“I would say Vietnam is the best value-for-money travel destination for Aussies at the moment. You can get great airfares and luxury hotel packages, and eating, shopping and touring there is still highly affordable. You can get a three-course meal with drinks for two for about $10”, says Gorman.
South East Asia
The Australian dollar has only dropped a few cents against the currencies of Aussie favourite holiday destinations Thailand and Bali. However, because those destinations have been popular for so long, they can be quite pricey.
“Consider travelling to destinations such as Cambodia, Malaysia, Laos, Burma or even Myanmar for better value. South East Asia is so much more than Thailand and Bali, and there are so many picturesque beaches and so much history and culture to explore”, he says.
Greece, Italy and Spain
Europe is still affordable with many options to save money on both airfares and hotels, with the Aussie dollar slightly increasing its strength against the euro.
“Have you always dreamt of that wine and dine tour of Tuscany? Well, now is definitely the year to go”, adds Gorman.
North America might be more expensive to visit, so consider expolring the south.
“Mexico has for a long time been a favourite hotspot for celebrities, and who can disagree with the A-list? The Yucatán Peninsula in particular is just as picturesque as it looks, and offers great diving options for underwater enthusiasts”, he says.
The Aussie dollar has strengthened against the Yen, making Japan an even more attractive travel destination.
“Japan has everything – gorgeous scenery, amazing shopping and world-class skiing. Go discover what thousands of Aussies have already fallen in love with”, recommends Gorman.
Dubai and Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have never been cheap destinations which to travel, but with the Aussie dollar remaining pretty static towards the dirham, now might be the perfect time to fulfil your golden-desert dream.
“Many flights stop in Dubai when flying to Europe, but both Dubai and Abu Dhabi are so much more than stopover destinations – so take a few days from your travel itinerary to explore the shopping and the sand dunes”, suggests Gorman.
South Pacific cruises
Why not discover the South Pacific on water? With an increasing number of cruise ships calling Australia home, the competition is fierce, which helps to keep the price of cruising affordable.
“With most meals included, a cruise can certainly be a great value holiday on a budget”, Gorman explains.
Now is as good a time as any to discover our own backyard.
“People around the world dream of visiting our beautiful shores, but for us locals it can sometimes be difficult to appreciate what we have under our very own nose. So why not take this year to discover what Australia has to offer, from the wine counties to our famous underwater wonders”, offers Gorman.
This article contributed by Luxuryescapes.com.au.