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Avoid ‘Hidden Charges’ on Your Holidays

When considering cheap holidays overseas during next week’s half-term holidays, British families need to be aware of all “hidden” visa charges and taxes, rather than being stung by them upon arrival.

The latest survey by Post Office Travel Money has paid special attention to this, noting that families seeking to take cheap holidays in Mexico would have to pay up to £145 in charges, plus another £36 upon return to the UK. Similarly, Kenya holidays will cost a family of four £138.88, while a trip to Cuba will cost £124.44 in charges, Aruba holidays will cost £97.24 and visiting the Dominican Republic will set the family back £83.22. There are also noteworthy charges accruing on otherwise cheap holidays destinations such as Egypt and Turkey, said Post Office Travel Money head Sarah Munro.

“Families looking for a low-priced half-term holiday may get a nasty surprise if they have to pay tourist taxes on top,” she added.

“This is likely to be particularly problematic for people who are on an all-inclusive package as they may not have budgeted to take foreign cash to cover the charge.”

Ms Munro went on to say that families need to talk to their travel operators before their holidays to confirm who would be paying any extra charges – usually they are included in package deals.

The Post Office Travel Money report found that the best value cheap holidays this half-term could still be found in Spain, thanks to a combination of low prices and no visa charges, by dint of Spain’s EU membership. Cheap holidays in the Costa del Sol are the best value of all, researchers looking at a selection of prices on holiday items discovered, followed by Ms Munro holidays in Phuket, Thailand, Sharm el Sheikh in Egypt, Orlando in Florida and Paphos in Cyprus.