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Algarve tops the ‘Self catering on a shoestring’ barometer

By DAISY SAMPSON [email protected]

A survey of supermarket prices across the top eurozone family holiday destinations by the Post Office has revealed the Algarve to be one of the top locations to enjoy a value-for-money self catering family holiday.

To create the Self Catering on a Shoestring Barometer 2011, researchers visited supermarkets located in resorts with the items bought based on an estimate of the average consumption of a family of four over a week.

From this survey the Algarve come out as the second cheapest destination, only behind C´an Picafort in Majorca.

The Algarve shopping basket was only 33 pence more expensive than Majorca, with many items on the list of essentials found to be cheaper in the Algarve than anywhere else in the eurozone, including butter and coffee.

The report also compared the prices of items bought on holiday abroad with those in the British holiday resort of Brighton and found that the UK was ranked at number 10 in the list of 13 countries with a total cost of £63.63 for the weekly shop.

Supermarket prices for basic items are an increasingly important factor for families planning a self catering holiday as they affect the overall cost of a holiday, while the self catering market is a growing one according to the Post Office as “families hoping to cut their holiday costs by dropping hotels in favour of self catering stays.”

Sarah Munro, the Post Office Head of Travel money, said: “Self-catering can be a great way for families to save money on the cost of their holiday while at the same time offering more flexibility and the freedom for them to come and go as they please.”

She added: “The wide cost variations we found mean that families will be well advised to do their homework before booking and check eurozone shopping prices.”

Meanwhile, the Post Office Holiday Costs Barometer 2011 has placed the Algarve at number three in the rankings for the best value destination in Europe.

This report looks at the cost of general holiday items including a postcard with a stamp, sun cream and insect repellent and only the Costa del Sol with a basket total of £42.15 and Sunny Beach in Bulgaria (£44.79) were found to be cheaper than the Algarve (£49.63).