Some travel companies are starting to add surcharges to already paid for holidays because the pound has supposedly crashed since Brexit, and traditional holidaymakers are not happy. Is this right?
Mark Warner Holidays are the latest company to invoke a surcharge clause in package holiday contracts that allows them to charge up to 10% extra, they aren’t the first of course and a number of ABTA affiliated companies have done the same, but they all say they are doing this because of currency fluctuations or other price rises due to the EU referendum result, or Brexit.
This is despite these holidays already being sold, bought and paid for by the holidaymakers.
And a lot of people are rightly angry at this. I would be too.
They say they are doing this because the pound has crashed since Brexit, and they have to recoup the costs.
Well first of all the pound hasn’t really crashed has it? Despite all the negative media attention and the doomsaying from the media, the pound has certainly dropped a little against other currencies, down 8% today against the Euro since before the referendum result.
Guess what? It’s a currency. That’s what currencies do! It will rise again and it will drop again! It is still one of the strongest performing currencies in the world and worth more than the euro and the dollar to name just two!
Hardly the crash that many predicted. We’re British for crying out loud, stop panicking!
So that isn’t really a good excuse to slap an extra surcharge on holiday makers is it? And even if it was surely the holiday firms are obligated to take the hit and absorb the cost themselves? Indeed they are professionally obligated to absorb the first 2%. They were quick enough to profit from the pound when it was running strong and they certainly weren’t giving a rebate of up to 10% to holidaymakers then were they?
Let’s face it. This has nothing at all to do with Brexit, and everything to do with companies desperately trying to cling onto profit margins.
This is on top of the fact that package holidays like this are already heavily overpriced to pay all the agents and inflate the profit margins of the companies providing the package deal.
There is an answer to this of course. Travel independently!
Are Package Holidays Redundant?
I’m not knocking the traditional travel industry at all, it does have its place. But at the end of the day it is much cheaper and with a little bit of effort just as easy – if not more so – to just sort everything out yourself and travel independently.
It is the easiest thing in the world to research where you want to travel to online and find out everything you need to know about any destination. It is easier than it ever has been to search for flight deals and compare prices online. As for where to stay? Well that has never been easier to book online either, although there is still the old backpacker habit of just finding a place to sleep when you arrive.
Travelling independently will save you a hell of a lot of money too, especially if you travel for longer periods of time. You can spend that money on more and better experiences instead! You will have more choice in where you go, where you stay and what you do.
Travelling independently is even far more sustainable, and there is a huge argument for travellers supporting the local travel industry and local businesses instead of large corporations by sitting around in a bland resort.
So what are you waiting for? Ditch the package holiday and take a gap year instead!
The traditional travel industry is already reeling hard from a sharp decline in people travelling with them and surely things like this will just make it worse? They really are in danger of fostering a lot of bad feeling and making themselves increasingly irrelevant.
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