Family holidays cost up to €600 as demand and inflation soar

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Cash-strapped families are taking their children out of school to take them on holiday to save money, we have learned.

As the cost of a family holiday in Spain has soared by €600, increases in flights, accommodation and car hire are forcing families to go in search of bargains.

Since the easing of COVID-19 restrictions, there has been a surge in demand for vacations abroad, but this has been accompanied by an alarming rise in inflation.

Families are taking their children out of school to take them on holiday to save money Pic: Shutterstock

The budget airline’s boss, Michael O’Leary, has warned that he expects the price of flights could rise by up to 10% as demand rises this summer.

A survey by the Irish Independent of four Irish travel agents found the average cost for a family of four was €2,532 for a seven-night package (flights and accommodation) at the apartment complex four-star Sunset Beach Club in Benalmadena, the Costa del Sol, from August 5 to 12, compared to around €2,279 in previous years.

Agents warn that prices have risen by an average of 10% as accommodation and air fares rise.

Michael O’Leary has warned he expects the price of flights could rise by 10% as demand increases this summer Pic: Shutterstock

For the same week in August, the cheapest Ryanair flights to Malaga will cost the same family €839.92 in total, while Aer Lingus flights would cost €1,122.84.

If the family chooses to book directly with Sunset Beach Club, it will cost them €1,963 for their seven-night stay through Booking.com.

A look at car rental prices from five of the major companies – Hertz, Avis, Enterprise, Europcar and Sixt – at Malaga Airport shows that the family can expect to pay an average of €670 (€95 per day ) to rent a five-seat, economy class car for seven days.

Travelers face massive delays in processing their passports Pic: Shutterstock

Meanwhile, thousands of parents are at risk of missing holidays due to problems processing first passports for children and young babies.

The Foreign Office has confirmed that there is a huge backlog at the Passport Office, with a record 195,000 applications awaiting processing.

That’s up from 170,000 just three weeks ago. TDs said Extra.ie they are inundated with applications from anxious parents waiting for their children’s applications, with some facing processing times of up to 14 weeks.

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