This is certainly not any time to gloat. Turkey’s currency crisis has thrown the country into turmoil. But British holidaymakers heading there over the next few weeks are in for a financial treat, as tour operators reduce their prices to reflect the plunge in the Turkish lira.
If you booked in January — the month when traditionally the holiday booking season begins — you might be kicking yourself, because a pound at that time would have bought you 5.2 Turkish lira. Now, it will get you 7.7 lira — a decline of one-third in the value of Turkey’s currency.
So this might be the moment to book a last-minute holiday and grab a bargain in the process.
Here are some examples of how prices have changed from the start of the year . . .
Jet2Holidays (jet2.com, 0800 408 1350) is offering a package for two adults and two children flying from Stansted on August 29 for a week. You will stay in self-catering accommodation at Club Aquarium on the Dalaman coast, with water slides, nightly entertainment and direct access to the beach.
The cost now is £1,948 — a £400 saving on what you would have paid earlier in the year. Four dinners at a budget restaurant will cost around 320 lira, according to the website Numbeo, which calculates living costs around the world. In January, that would have translated to £60. Now it will set you back just £42.
Thirsty? 15 beers would have cost you 200 lira, or £38. Now it equates to £26.
Full-board for two adults and two children at the Hotel Sunrise in Marmaris on the Dalaman Coast with TUI holidays (tui.co.uk, 0871 231 4691), flying from Birmingham on August 25, costs £3,157 — a £352 saving on earlier in the year. Throw in five bottles of wine and they would have cost £33 in January, but £23 now. You might want to enliven your holiday with a hot-air balloon flight. According to the Lonely Planet website, you would expect to pay 140 lira per person — which would have been the equivalent of £120 for the family in January but only £73 today.
Book now with I Escape (i-escape.com, 0117 946 7072) and enjoy seven nights for the price of five at 4 Reasons Hotel and Bistro in Bodrum for £308pp (was £434pp). Flights are not included and price based on two sharing a room on a B&B basis. Located on the Aegean Coast, the hotel welcomes children and you can always hop aboard a ferry and enjoy a day trip to the nearby Greek Island of Kos.
An all-inclusive week at Club Hotel Falcon in Antalya, on the Turquoise Coast, costs from £289 per person with flights (blueseaholidays.co.uk, 0203 474 0469). The four-star hotel has a private beach, waterslides and several bars. Located in the Lara area, the ‘Las Vegas’ of Turkey, the hotel is walking distance to restaurants and nightlife.
A Four-night city break to Istanbul for two people, leaving from Stansted on September 3, staying at the four-star Agora Life hotel, through opodo.com, costs £882 — compared with £1,000 earlier in the year.
Lit up: The Byzantine Hagia Sophia in Sultanahmet, Istanbul
Four dinners and lunches at a mid-range restaurant cost 520 lira, which would have been £100 in January, now just £67.
Three-day museum pass for Istanbul: 280 Lira £54 in January, £36 now. Taxis: 200 Lira £40 in January, £26 now.
Plan your own tour of Turkey for two weeks, leaving on September 1. There’s not much you can do to make the airfare more attractive (Heathrow to Istanbul with Turkish Airlines costs £504 return), but once you’re there the exchange rate will work in your favour.
Car hire costs 3,000 lira — £580 in January, £390 now; hotels 2,500 lira — £480 in January, £325 now; 100 litres of fuel are 600 lira — £115 in January, £78 now; food 2,000 lira — £380 in January, £260 now. The total cost in January would have been £2,059. Now it’s £1,557, saving £502.
Two people staying seven nights at the five-star Sueno Golf Club in Belek (golfclub.sueno.com, 0090 242 710 30 00), on Turkey’s glorious southern Antalya coast, will pay £439 per person, a reduction of nearly 40 per cent on the £705 you would have paid earlier in the year with golfbreaks.com. You get unlimited rounds of golf thrown in.
Let’s say you drink 30 bottles of beer while there at a cost of 400 lira — in January that would have been £76, the equivalent of £52 today.
There are significant savings on food costs. For example, 260 lira worth of food in January would have cost you around £50. The same groceries today work out at £34.
Why not add a boat trip during your holiday at 35 lira per person? In January that would have cost £27 for a family of four today, it will cost only £18.