One of the UK’s leading escorted tour companies, Riviera Travel, conducted a study on Generation-Z spending habits and found that 50 percent go over budget when they travel.
The research, conducted in the U.K., found that one of the major reasons travelers exceeded their budgets was due to a lack of understanding of the value of various foreign currencies. Another problem was unexpected costs. Research showed that younger travelers were far more likely to face additional costs. Seventy-seven percent of 18 to 24-year-olds admit to having spent money on unexpected charges on holiday, compared to just 42 percent of over-55s.
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The most common additional fees were the following:
—Credit card charges: 19 percent
—Calls and texts: 17 percent
—Mobile roaming: 16 percent
—City tax: 14 percent
—Baggage allowance: 13 percent
Travelers are often overcharged for things, which is another reason that they overspend.
—Taxis: 26 percent
—Food: 22 percent
—Drinks: 21 percent
—Souvenirs: 14 percent
—Visitor attractions: 12 percent
—Tour guides: 9 percent
In most cases, younger travelers were more likely to be caught out by these costs, according to Riviera Travel’s research.
Riviera undertook this research to highlight where British holidaymakers struggle when it comes to holiday finances,” said Rachel Pillsbury, head of insight at Riviera Travel. “This data indicates that a lack of understanding of foreign currencies could be contributing to budgeting issues whilst traveling.
“If people are not aware of the value of the currency they’re spending, it’s much easier for them to lose track of what they’ve spent,” Pillsbury noted. “This means they can end up unknowingly paying over the odds for goods and services, breaking their holiday budget.”
Following a few tips can help travelers prepare for the cost of overseas travel and mitigate unexpected charges.
Knowing what your credit card charges as a foreign exchange rate is a good place to start and to find out how much foreign transaction fees will be.
Where you change money is also important. Sometimes cash machines will net you the best rate. In other places, the best place to change money is at your hotel. Always make sure you have a combination of cash and cards so that you can ensure you aren’t being overcharged for currency.
Mobile phones can also be a major expense when traveling abroad. If you don’t have an international plan, consider buying a local SIM card so you are using and paying for data, texts and calls at local rates.
Travelers should also check the baggage restrictions and make sure that they pack accordingly. Paying for overweight luggage is an easy way to throw away money. If you purchased too much on your trip abroad, consider shipping items home to save money.