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Sterling surge fuels long-haul holiday destinations leap

An increasing number of Britons appear to be jetting off to the other side of the world after New Zealand, Japan and Australia topped a table of the fastest growing currency sales in the UK this summer.

Travellers heading to all three long-haul destinations have benefited from sterling's surge in value this year.

Data from the Post Office showed a 56% increase in demand for the New Zealand dollar from June to August, compared to the same period last year.

Sales of the Japanese yen - which has struggled against sterling all year - rose by 52% this summer.

The Australian dollar has weakened by more than 20% in recent months. Consumers appear to have responded as its popularity increased by 39%.

Andrew Brown of Post Office Travel Money, said: "The surge in sales we have seen for the Australian and New Zealand dollars is a clear indication holidaymakers are becoming increasingly astute and doing their homework to see when exchange rates are in their favour.

"These may not be the cheapest places to visit but they are among the world's most aspirational destinations and the power of the pound provides a great incentive to make this the year to visit.

"Over the past five years, sterling has strengthened by almost 50% against the yen and the extra cash in tourists' pockets means that Japan should no longer be regarded only as a luxury destination.

"Better still, our latest barometer research reveals that local prices in Tokyo are down 25% as well."

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