Simon Calder: We are no longer the rich men of Europe
Saturday 16 August 2008
Ask yourself this: how many French francs did you get to the pound? About 10, wasn't it? Well, British holidaymakers in France have rarely had it so bad as this summer. The rate for the franc was frozen against the euro when the single European currency entered circulation, and an easy calculation reveals that the exchange rate of €1.22 works out at just eight francs to the pound.
For anyone who still travels by air, the more recent slump against the dollar is even more worrying. The US will, of course, be more expensive. But because everything in aviation is priced in dollars, a 10 per cent slide in sterling pushes up airlines costs by about the same proportion. Prepare for more route cuts and higher fares.
The outlook for next summer could be even gloomier for the package holidaymaker. Tour operators who wisely hedged against rises in the value of the euro and the price of oil will have no such protection in 2009, pushing up holiday costs dramatically.
The silver lining for these darkening clouds is likely to be earned by the UK travel industry. This should be the best summer for years as Brits holiday at home and Europeans find us no longer an over-priced island with a lousy climate. The weather may not have changed, but we are no longer the rich men of Europe – they are.
- 1 Is your name now 'banned' in Saudi Arabia?
- 2 Gender-specific books demean all our children. So the Independent on Sunday will no longer review anything marketed to exclude either sex
- 3 Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370: Did jetliner fly into area controlled by Taliban? Net widens after claims final satellite signal could have been sent from the ground
- 4 Nasa-funded study warns of ‘collapse of civilisation’ in coming decades
- 5 'Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 plane found in Bermuda Triangle!' Viral Facebook links are profiting hackers
Ukip and Nigel Farage on course for remarkable victory in European elections
Tony Benn was entirely ineffectual - and usually wrong
Katie Hopkins continues campaign to become Britain's most hated talking head with poorly timed Bob Crow tweet
No EU referendum under Labour: Ed Miliband to reveal that vote on membership is ‘unlikely’ in next Parliament if party wins power
Britain’s five richest families worth as much as poorest 20 per cent, says Oxfam
The rise of Ukip: Study warns Labour that Eurosceptic party's electoral base now 'more working class than any of the main parties'
£20000 - £40000 per annum + Award-Winning Benefits: Flight Centre Business Tra...
£17000 - £20000 per annum + Basic salary +incentives: FCm Travel Solutions: FC...
£25000 - £35000 per annum + Benefits: Corporate Traveller: This is your opport...
£18000 - £25000 per annum: Flight Centre Limited: Join one of the biggest trav...