The British pound has been somewhat fragile in recent months. Rampant inflation and the Bank of England’s somewhat dovish approach to hiking interest rates has allowed the pound to fall significantly against other leading foreign currencies.
In fact, the pound briefly touched $1.03 to the pound at the end of September – an all-time low brought on by a string of unfunded tax cuts by the UK government’s recent mini-budget.
A weak pound against the US dollar makes holidays to the United States significantly more expensive for the average household. In the last 15 years, the dollar has gone from being worth $2.10 to the pound to worth $1.03 to the pound. Some economic analysts believe it’s not beyond the realms of possibility for the pound to reach parity with the dollar.
The forex market has been exceptionally volatile at present, with geopolitical and economic events seemingly rocking major and minor forex pairs daily right now. It’s possible to use forex markets to speculate on world events, with contracts for difference (CFD) brokers enabling everyday people to buy and sell the price of one currency against another. The CFD forex market is one of the most liquid on the planet, but you don’t ever have to physically own the currencies you trade with CFDs. A CFD is essentially a contract that allows you to profit from the rise or fall of the underlying asset.
With uncertainty rampant surrounding the pound at present, there are precious few holiday destinations where sterling gives you more bang for your buck. Fortunately, there are still a handful of countries whose own currencies are seemingly weaker than the pound. Below, we shine a spotlight on a quartet of countries where living costs are dramatically lower than the UK or their currency remains much weaker than the pound.
Bulgaria is something of a hidden gem in the Balkan region. Few realize that Bulgaria is home to some of the Black Sea’s most beautiful beaches, as well as rugged mountains and warm, Eastern European nightlife. The pound is faring surprisingly well against the Bulgarian lev. After hitting 2.19 lev to the pound at the end of September, it’s now 2.22 lev to the pound. This is good news for venturing to what’s considered the European Union’s most affordable nation.
The sun-kissed beaches of Thailand have long been a popular tourist destination for those who enjoy south-east Asia. Its welcoming people, vibrant wildlife, and jaw-dropping geography make for an unforgettable experience. The Thai economy has struggled to awaken since the pandemic and the Thai baht remains relatively weak against the pound. After hitting a low of 40.61 baht to the pound in September, it bounced up to 42.85 baht to the pound in early October. It’s been relatively stable in a range of 42-45 baht to the pound during the last five years.
In late September, the pound even slumped against the lesser-known Tunisian dinar, falling to a price of 3.53 dinar to the pound. It has since rallied to around 3.67 to the pound, with the dinar even hitting 3.99 dinar to the pound in 2019. It’s incredibly cheap to live in Tunisia too – 20.5% cheaper than nearby Morocco in fact, and a whopping 62.2% cheaper than the UK.
Turkey has long been a favorite holiday destination for British travelers and soaring inflation has meant that the pound has strengthened substantially against the Turkish lira. 12 months ago, the lira was worth 11.71 to the pound. It’s now worth 20.61 to the pound, effectively making your holiday budget go twice as far. The country is also desperate to see an economic boost from its tourism industry, so there are some very good deals to be found here.