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EU holiday popularity is slowly dying for Brits amid Brexit

Lianna Brinded
Head of Yahoo Finance UK
People sunbathe on a sunny day at La Concha beach in the Spanish Basque city of San Sebastian on September 16, 2018. Photo: GABRIEL BOUYS/AFP/Getty Images

Fewer Brits are booking holidays in countries in the European Union as Brexit uncertainty continues, according to major tour operator Thomas Cook (TCG.L).

The group, which 19 million people use to book holidays each year, said that 48% of the holidays it sold up until the end of February this year for British people have been to non-EU destinations —  a 10% rise year-on-year.

Spain still remains the most popular place for Brits, despite the rise in trips to non-EU destinations among British holidaymakers.

There is “little doubt that the prolonged uncertainty around the manner and timing of Britain’s exit from the European Union has led many customers to press pause on their holiday plans for this summer,” said Peter Fankhauser CEO of Thomas Cook.

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Britain was due to leave the EU on 29 March this year. While an exit from the bloc has been delayed until 31 October 2019, Britain could leave at any time up until that date  under a new agreement with the EU.

The data is in line with findings by Post Office Travel Money. Its transaction figures between 1 January and 23 April this year show sales of the Japanese yen were up 12% year-on-year, while sales of the Indonesian rupiah rose by 9%.

The Post Office’s figures also show currency sales of the Egyptian pound saw the largest growth, with a 687% rise year-on-year.

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