TRAVEL COSTS: Albury Travel and Cruise director Jacqui Nelson said the foreign exchange rate cost Australian overseas travellers. Picture: JAMES WILTSHIRE
Border travellers are facinga huge hike in costs due toAustralia’s lack of bite in Britain.
Travel agent Jacqui Nelson said the foreign exchange rate between Australia and the United Kingdom was the lowest in seven years –with about twoAustralian dollars worth one British pound.
The Albury Travel and Cruise director saidthe rate had not been this low since the Global Financial Crisis.
Ms Nelsonsaid the UK was one of the most popular destinations for people living on the Border and travellers were not often influenced by the exchange rate.
“We find if the dollar goes up, more people go– but people don’t often pull out of their holiday if it drops,” she said.
Ms Nelson said while the low dollar cost overseas travellers, it encouraged more tourism to Australia.
“It prompts more people from the UK to come here,” she said.
“That has to be good for Australian tourism.”
Ms Nelson advised people to pay for what they could before heading to the UK to avoid getting bounced around by the foreign exchange rate.
“Their budget should be realistic because the exchange rate is not suddenly going to become better or worse,” she said.
“They also shouldn’t stress –it’s a holiday.”
Ms Nelson said the exchange rate had been unusually high for the last few years.
“People are recognising this so they are locking in early bird offers to hold current prices,” she said.
Wodonga’s Nicola Lehmstedt will head to the UK in September and said the exchange rate hadimpacted her holiday.
“Obviously everything is a bit more pricey,” she said.
“We haveto pay for a wedding and also for the honeymoon.
“Itlimits the amount of things we can do overseas.”
And while tourists may be scrambling to save money to holiday to the UK, Australia’s economy is expected to boom.
Colin Campbell, Rutherglen winemaker for Campbells Wines, said the effect of the exchange rate on the industry was encouraging and he expected an increase in the number of products exported.
“The price of the dollar before wiped us out of the market in the UK and US in particular,” he said.
“But now we are seeing a growth pattern for the first time in about five years.”
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