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Beyond the Eurozone

It’s a topsy-turvy world we live in, folks. On the one hand we’re told that the prospect of Greece leaving the euro could have catastrophic consequences for the British economy, and on the other we discovered not long ago that the pound had reached its strongest position against the euro for three and a half years. 

In fact, about 80% of world currencies are currently weaker against the pound than they were 12 months ago. With that in mind, we’ve put together a list of recommendations for those destinations just beyond the eurozone, where you’ll be able to wring a little extra juice out of your pounds. 

The pound is up 12% against the kuna compared to this time last year. That’s one reason to consider heading off to Croatia this summer. Other reasons include the stunning coastline dotted with pine-fringed beaches, the 1100+ islands, seven UNESCO World Heritage Sites and some incredible nightlife. Croatia is truly a destination with a little something for everyone and a firm favourite among Travelzoo staffers. Find out just why with this 20%-off deal for a half-board week in Korcula, Croatia

Once upon a time, the thought of heading off to the land of fire and ice was a thoroughly daunting one. Will we have to remortgage the house to afford a long weekend in a 3-star hotel? Should we fill our bags with Kendal mint cake and Pot Noodles so we don’t have to face the humiliation of crying when we receive the bill in a restaurant? Thanks to a banking calamity and an angry volcano, those days are over and Iceland is more affordable than ever. Here’s a great deal to get you on your way: return flights to Reykjavik with Wow Air are now £139, with free tickets to the Blue Lagoon included. 

Turkish resorts such as Marmaris, Bodrum and Fethiye have long been a happy hunting ground for those in search of a bargain destination. Not a huge surprise really when you consider deals like this all-inclusive beach week on the Turkish Riviera for £299 per person. That’s just one of the many Turkey deals we’re currently featuring. Throw in the fact that the pound is up roughly 14% year-on-year against the Turkish lira and this place looks more and more appealing by the day. 

North Cyprus 
This self-declared state, recognised only by Turkey, has what you might call a complex political status. It is also undeniably beautiful, largely untouched by modern development and, with the Turkish lira as its currency, a great place for a bargain holiday.   

Morocco can usually be relied on to throw up cheap getaways, but even we were a little surprised when we came across this one: a 4-star stay in a Marrakesh riad, on a half-board basis, for £279. That’s half the usual price; crazy price, as the man in the souk might say. 

Recently named best bargain destination in the Post Office Holiday Costs Barometer, Bulgaria is one of Europe’s hottest up-and-coming destinations. And with the pound up 10% against the lev (year on year), that trend looks set to continue this summer. The Black Sea (where most of the resorts are) might not be the most attractively named destination – but then, with some of the deals we’ve seen, we reckon they can call it what they want. 

Way beyond the eurozone: Mexico 
OK, so it’s a little further afield than the other places we’ve mentioned, but given that the pound will currently buy you nearly 16% more pesos than it would have done a year ago, it’d be foolish not to consider it. With plenty of all-inclusive deals available, and Virgin Atlantic’s new route to Cancun now open, the Riviera Maya is more accessible and affordable than ever.

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Tips by

Deal Expert, London
Thursday, 12 July 2012
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Rory Batho