Lonely Planet Writer

Discover why Tokyo has now been named the cheapest of 30 long-haul destinations in the world

If you’re looking for value for money on a long-haul trip (and who isn’t?) you’ll be interested to learn that Tokyo has eclipsed its competitors for the first time to emerge as the cheapest of 30 popular resorts and cities. The findings come from the tenth annual Long Haul Holiday Report by UK foreign exchange provider, Post Office Travel Money, and they show that big price falls helped Tokyo to overtake Cape Town to rank as best value for long-haul travel.

Colourful signs in Akihabara, Tokyo. Image: ESB Professional/Shutterstock

Based on prices researched by long-haul holiday specialist, Travelbag, and cross-referenced with those provided by tourist offices, a basket of ten tourist items, ranging from a cup of coffee to meals and drinks, was found to cost £48.90 in Tokyo. This has made it 24% cheaper than runner-up Cape Town (£64.50), where the increased cost of eating out and a stronger South African rand has resulted in a 32% price rise over the past year.

Cape Town in South Africa. Image: Exodus Travels

Six of the ten best value destinations were found to be cheaper this year. Mombasa in Kenya came third, followed by Colombo, in Sri Lanka, and Hoi An in Vietnam. Making up the top ten is 6. Bali, Indonesia 7. Tamarindo, Costa Rica 8. Orlando, USA, 9. Penang, Malaysia and 10. Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. Travelbag researchers found prices fell for UK visitors in 40% of the 30 destinations surveyed, and the biggest year-on-year falls have been in three Caribbean islands, Rodney Bay in St LuciaMontego Bay in Jamaica and Jolly Beach in Antigua.

Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. Image: Margarethe Jaeger

The Post Office barometer shows sizeable falls in two Middle Eastern destinations, with prices down 21% in both Muscat, Oman (27th place) and Jumeirah Beach, Dubai (29th). Japan, Jamaica and St Lucia are among the destinations in hot demand according to the latest bookings trends from Travelbag. Compared with a year ago, bookings are up almost 23% for Japan, nearly 27% for St Lucia and 63% for Jamaica.

You can see the full report here.