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Brits still holidaying abroad despite cost-of-living woes

Emma Lunn
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Emma Lunn

The great summer getaway is still happening this year, despite financial pressures.

A survey by HSBC found that 18% of UK travellers are likely to travel to destinations they have been to before, but younger people (23 to 34-years-old) are more likely to choose their holiday spot because of a social media influencer or after seeing it on a film or TV show. One in 10 (8%) holidaymakers said they picked their destination at random.

The study by HSBC found that nearly three-quarters (71%) of people are planning a trip abroad this year, with Spain, Italy, Greece, the USA and France topping the list of destinations this summer.

Just under half (46%) of holidaymakers said this year they’d rather spend less for a budget holiday and stay away a little longer, rather than splashing out on a shorter luxury vacation.

HSBC found that Brits were cutting back on eating out, nights out, clothes and large purchases in order to afford their summer break.

What’s the best way to spend money abroad?

British travellers’ favourite ways to spend money abroad are local currency cash (27%), followed by debit cards (23%), credit cards (18%) and prepaid currency cards (10%).

Three in five (61%) Brits said they considered card fees when spending money overseas. But more than one in three (35%) admitted they don’t know how much money they’re spending when they’re on holiday because they don’t know the exchange rate.

Despite advice suggesting that you can usually save money by opting to spend in local currency when using your cards abroad – one in three holidaymakers (33%) said they always choose to pay in GBP.

Just under a quarter (24%) of Brits are also potentially missing out on chances to save money, as they admitted they never compare fees or exchange rates while planning their travel spending.

Pella Frost, head of everyday banking at HSBC UK, said: “While the vast majority of Brits are looking forward to travelling abroad this year, they’re also feeling the pinch on their finances more than ever.

“In addition to making it easier to access competitive FX rates and manage spending, our Global Money account has helped customers save an estimated £3m in card fees when spending abroad.”