The fall in the value of the pound means that summer holidays have become more expensive. It is estimated that most families will fork out around £1000 per week on excursions, food and drink. Around a quarter will spend £250 on a new wardrobe and picking up last-minute necessities at the airport.
Researchers from the Halifax found that foreign exchange fees and high withdrawal fees mean that more holidaymakers are relying on cash rather than cards. Richard Washington, from Halifax Credit Cards, said taking cash was risky because it can get stolen, mislaid or run out.
Although credit cards may be subject to high fees they are convenient. They also offer protection for the services or goods being purchased and can help to spread the cost of the holiday. Unfortunately using them incurs an average fee of 2.75 per cent.
Using a debit card can prove even more expensive because on top of the 2.75 per cent charge is a £1.25 purchase fee. However, debit cards are often cheaper to use at the cash point than credit cards.
USwitch.com’s Michael Ossei advised travellers to look into pre-paid currency cards as they are as flexible as other types of plastic but without the unpredictable additional fees. Those who decide to take cash should shop around and avoid doing it at the airport where the charges can be costly, added Ossei.