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Thursday, January 28, 2016

Travel Not “Loonie Business”

When Canadians are faced with a low dollar or recession, many things get put on hold such as that new flat screen, renovations, a new car, or investments. However, faced with long winters, travel is one thing Canadians not only refuse to give up but deserve. The only difference is that we become a little more concerned while we give our daily check to see how our Canuck buck is fairing against our U.S. counterpart. There are ways of taking the “penny panic” out of your vacation and still extend the value of your vacation when faced with a Loonie in decline.

While going off the beaten path and freedom of travel is always enlightening and rewarding it is advisable to avoid do-it-yourself trips with a low dollar as many hotels, cars, meals, tours and ticket attractions outside of Canada are based on the American dollar. By booking an all-inclusive package you are paying in Canadian dollars saving you unexpected costs in your destination and a fluctuating exchange rate. When booking your vacation, if at all possible try to pay in full at the time of booking as these locks in your price. 
However, by just putting a deposit down, you may still be subject to cost increases due to the falling dollar against foreign currency. 
All-inclusive resorts take away the cost shock of paying a bill locally in U.S. dollars as all of your meals, drinks, accommodation and many activities are prepaid for in Canadian dollars before you even board the plane.

Popular Caribbean destinations such as Mexico, Dominican Republic and Cuba have always provided excellent value for Canadian travelers and during times of financial instability, these destinations hold their value provided you are taking an all-inclusive option and pay with local currency as much as possible.

Not being limited to just fun in the sun, Europe is still a strong option since the Euro is also in a state of decline. Many Canadian operators have escorted packages to Europe which includes air, hotel, most meals and admission to attractions and side tours. By taking a fully escorted tour, you see all the sites and highlights of Europe without forking out extra for fuel and car rental charges.

Make this the time to take that exotic vacation. 
Have you ever dreamed of taking that trip to Thailand, Vietnam, Australia, Brazil?, instead of putting it off because it’s too expensive consider that the Loonie is still strong with many of the currencies outside of the U.S. Of course getting there may cost more but locally your dollar will go further and not to worry…

Disney and the Vegas strip will still be here when you get back and the dollar starts to improve.

Do your research.  The tourism industry keeps very informed to currency fluctuations and when it starts to hit their wallets, they will start offering incentives to attract visitors and recover lost revenue. This could include free hotel nights, free attraction tickets and “at par” promotions. Although many of the promotions are during off peak travel dates, by being flexible, you can definitely stretch your travel budget and limit the effect of a weaker dollar.

Also by being flexible, you can always book last minute. When the departure date gets closer, rather than letting the plane go half empty, costs of packages and flights can be drastically reduced and these savings can more than offset any  increase locally in exchange rates. If you have limited flexibility, plan well ahead and take advantage of any Early Booking bonuses offered by tour operators but again try to pay in full as to avoid any future price increases due should they be necessary.

A low dollar is not a time to put off your travel plans and by contacting a 411Travelbuys travel professional; we can ensure you get the most for your travel dollar. 


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