Prices for UK tourists have fallen in the majority of 44 European cities surveyed for a new report published today (Saturday).
Prices have dropped in 29 cities researched by Post Office Travel Money.
The biggest falls are for traditional favourites including Venice, where prices dropped more than 23%, and Amsterdam. However, the Dutch destination remains the most expensive eurozone city surveyed despite a 17% drop in costs.
Lesser known cities in eastern Europe represent the best value for money with Vilnius and Belgrade among emerging cities where costs are lower than in more established favourites such as Budapest, Krakow and Tallinn.
The Lithuanian capital of Vilnius is ranked as best for a bargain break, with costs down more than 11% year-on-year to £147.35, followed by Belgrade at £151.57.
Porto is the only western European city to rate among the ten cheapest places for a bargain break based on the total cost of 12 typical spending items – including a range of drinks, an evening meal for two with wine, two nights’ three-star weekend accommodation, sightseeing charges and city transport.
Lower accommodation costs – based on an average of the ten lowest priced three-star city centre hotels, B&Bs and apartments available for two nights over the last weekend in March – were the biggest contributory factor to the overall price falls.
More availability lowered prices in almost three-quarters of the cities surveyed. The biggest falls were in Amsterdam (down £95 for two nights) and Venice (down £77), while there were also big reductions of £54 in Madrid, £35 in Nice and £28 in Vienna.
The study found that accommodation in the Latvian capital of Riga remains the cheapest across Europe at £67 for a two-night stay for two people sharing a room.
Prices for the typical basket of items fell in Warsaw by 11.5% over last spring to £160. Costs are also down 7% in Moscow to £187 and 5.3% in Prague.
But the five Nordic capitals of Copenhagen, Helsinki, Oslo, Reykjavik and Stockholm were again among the most expensive cities in the Post Office report.
Stockholm was cheapest of these at £395, while Reykjavik was the most expensive city overall at £463.
Cardiff is included in the survey for the first time as the cheapest of the four UK capitals at £293, just below Edinburgh at £295. London was the most expensive at £364, a year-on-year rise of 3.7%.
Prices in Belfast fell marginally to £313 and remain 19% lower than in Dublin due to higher accommodation costs in the Irish capital.
Andrew Brown, of Post Office Travel Money said: “Sterling is currently stronger than a year ago against every European currency but that could change so holidaymakers would be wise to consider both exchange rates and the underlying costs they will incur on a city break before booking.
“Canny travellers can save hundreds of pounds by comparing the cost of accommodation and picking a city where hotel prices are low and where meals, drinks and sightseeing prices are also cheap. This applies to most cities in eastern Europe but also to Porto, Athens and Lisbon.”
Biggest city price falls:
- Venice -23.3%
- Amsterdam -17%
- Nice -14.4%
- Madrid -14.3%
- Oslo -13%
- Vienna -13%
- Copenhagen -12.9%
- Warsaw -11.5%
- Vilnius -11.1%
- Valencia -11.1%
- Berlin -10.7%
- Bratislava -10.1%
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