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Holiday Euro Winter 2009:
"Holiday Euro" considerably more expensive in several overseas destinations

  • Although the US dollar slightly increased again, the US and Asia are slightly cheaper this year over one year earlier
  • England and Sweden are slightly more expensive againSeveral overseas destinations such as South Africa, Brazil and Australia have become considerably more expensive
  • Turkey, Hungary are cheap again, Switzerland remains expensive

“The Holiday Euro has hardly changed at close European destinations this winter over one year earlier”, Stefan Bruckbauer, chief economist of Bank Austria, summarises the latest calculation of the Holiday Euro. The price development within the euro countries was not very different to the development in Austria; outside the euro zone, the price development and exchange rates have partially balanced out. In total, the value of the Holiday Euro is more or less the same in winter 2009 like in winter 2008. Overseas destinations show an average value of the Holiday Euro similar to the one last year, but the development was partially rather different depending on the respective region. “Holidays in the US as well as in major parts of Asia this year is slightly cheaper than last year while holidays in South Africa, Brazil and Australia have become more expensive”, Mr Bruckbauer continues. Among the European regions which are less popular, Sweden has become more expensive, Romania has become cheaper.

Only small differences can be registered for the top holiday destinations of Austrian citizens compared with winter 2008. Turkey and Hungary correspondingly are the cheapest in 2009 as well, followed by Croatia. “Although the value of the US dollar rose in the past few years, the US is cheaper for winter holiday this year than last year and the Holiday Euro has a higher value of nearly 20% compared with Austria.” Nothing has changed regarding Switzerland, which still is one of the most expensive destinations, as well as regarding Ireland, which continues to be expensive, too.

The development among overseas destinations was very different by region compared with the previous year. South Africa and Brazil have become considerably more expensive; in addition, holidays in New Zealand and Australia largely are also significantly more expensive this year over one year earlier. The reason basically is the considerable revaluation towards the euro as well as the price development. “The situation at the end of last year which was favourable from the holidaymaker’s point of view because many countries registered strong devaluation as a result of the crisis has changed. Countries such as South Africa, Brazil as well as Australia and New Zealand have meanwhile registered revaluation again and have thus become more expensive”, Mr Bruckbauer says. In contrast, holidays in Asia as well as in the US are on average around 6% cheaper this year than last year.  This particularly applies to China and Hong Kong and – to a limited extent – also to Japan. However, the Holiday Euro’s value in Japan is considerably lower than at home although it slightly rose year-on-year.

Finally, Bank Austria economists point out that the figures are average values and therefore, single regions (such as London as central region) might vary. The price level refers to the average of goods and services in the single countries; single products (particularly for tourists) might vary significantly. As a result, no value but only its change was given for long-distance destination. The fact that the price level in some holiday destinations is much lower than in Austria is moreover a result of Austria's high level of income. If Austria’s price level was lower, the income level would be lower as well – we would often not be able to afford holidays.


Further inquiries: Bank Austria Economics and Market Analysis
Stefan Bruckbauer, Tel. 05 05 05 / 41951
e-mail: stefan.bruckbauer@unicreditgroup.at

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