Strike now while the Australian dollar is still stretching the distance
THE number of Australians heading overseas has increased more than 10 per cent over the past 12 months compared with the same period last year, according to latest figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
A joint Expedia and NAB Foreign Exchange Ranking released last month shows the Australian dollar at that time had soared 22 per cent against the Turkish lira and 18 per cent against the Tanzanian shilling. Our currency also performed well in Asia, climbing 16 per cent against the dong (Vietnam) and 12 per cent against the baht (Thailand). Other top 10 ‘‘value’’ destinations with favourable exchange rates include Argentina, Hong Kong and the US.
‘‘The Australian dollar . benefits from the ongoing
. resources boom and high commodity prices,’’ says NAB currency strategist Emma Lawson.
Despite its volatility, she says the dollar is expected to ‘‘remain relatively strong compared to historical levels’’.
At the same time, the price of hotel rooms in various cities across the world decreased in the first half of the year due to global instability, natural disasters and the effects of currency fluctuations, according to the latest Hotels.com Hotel Price Index, which compares international room rates at six-month intervals.
Average tariffs, when purchased in Australian currency, fell by 33 per cent in Kyoto, Japan, for example, while in the US, San Diego hotels were down by 19 per cent.
In Europe, falls were comparatively smaller, with London rates decreasing 4 per cent.
We can expect further currency weakness if global volatility persists. Lawson predicts, ‘‘The US dollar is likely to be stronger across the board but Australians may still find it relatively cheap to travel to Southeast Asia and eastern Europe.’’