They talk of the good old days of a strong US Dollar and British Pound, how they miss those cheap French Francs of the late-90s, the refreshingly inexpensive ski vacations to Canada and Australian sojourns that made winter migration so affordably glamorous. But despair not, globetrotting arbitrageurs still find luxury at a bargain providing they know where to go and how to book this winter.
In South America they’ll get more Brazilian Real for your USD and GBP than they did last year, but that will only matter if they make their hotel bookings in local currency when possible �" like at Rio’s Fasano. An anemic Argentine Peso makes Buenos Aries and Patagonia a steal this season, trading just short of 6:1 against the USD. Unfortunately, most Argentine hotels quote rates in American Dollars meaning that the true value will come once they’ve landed. To the contrary, Chile is enjoying a recent surge in its currency that makes it pricey this season while Uruguay remains steady and Mexico is just easing off early-2013 highs.
Further away, the South African Rand has dropped by nearly a third from their 2011 highs, making it a far better value this winter than New Zealand or Australia. Tokyo is still on sale, the Yen off around 20% from earlier in the year. They’ll want to steer clear of skiing in Switzerland, ditto with Canadian waters as each continue to outpace other currencies. Thailand is also pricier of recent while India remains the best value for luxury with hotels in Delhi and Mumbai pegged mostly to a local currency that’s lost nearly 35% of its value since 2011.