Sterling falls to seven-month low against euro just days before school holidays

By Neil Lancefield and Ian Jones, PA
The pound has lost 6% of its value against the currency since the start of May.

Families embarking on a summer holiday abroad when school terms end this week are being hit by a fall in the value of the pound.

Sterling is trading at around 1.11 euros, which is its weakest level since December 2018.

The pound has lost 6% of its value against the currency since the start of May, meaning the amount of euros UK tourists receive when exchanging £500 has fallen from around 580 to 555.

Holidaymakers heading to America face the worst exchange rate for more than two years, with sterling trading at just 1.24 US dollars.

This represents a fall of around 7% since March.

The drop in the value of sterling comes amid fears over a no-deal Brexit, after the Conservative leadership candidates failed to address concerns about the uncertain economic climate.

Analysis by Post Office Travel Money found that the pound has also declined against a number of other currencies used in popular destinations compared with this time last year, such as Thailand (down 13%), Bali (down 8%), Japan (down 9%) and Barbados (down 5%).

However, sterling has grown in value against currencies used in Turkey (up 14%), Iceland (up 12%) and South Africa (up 2%).

Despite the weakening of sterling against the euro, a recent Family Holiday Report published by Post Office Travel Money found that resort prices have become cheaper for UK visitors in more than half of 15 popular European family destinations over the past 12 months due to a drop in local prices.

Nick Boden, who leads the firm, said: “For those who haven’t yet booked their trip abroad and are looking for a late deal, it makes sense to pick a destination where sterling remains stronger.

“A surge in Post Office sales for the Turkish lira suggests that consumers are switching on to the fact that the prices of meals, drinks and other staples in resorts and cities can add significantly to their holiday cost, so these are becoming an increasingly important consideration.

“Picking a destination where prices on the ground are low can outweigh the impact of a weak exchange rate, but a destination where prices are cheap and sterling is strong is the best bet.”