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  1. [WRAP]http://www.pomsinoz.com/images/Holiday.png[/WRAP]The strength of the Australian Dollar over the past few months has enabled a record number of Australians to travel overseas, according to the Expedia NAB Travellers Foreign Currency Rankings. Although the strength of the Aussie dollar has been tempered in the past couple of weeks, the latest Australian Bureau of Statistics figures show overseas departures are close to record highs and had increased by 10 per cent in the seven months to July, compared with the same period last year. Marketing manager of Expedia, Amee Evans said Australian travellers were taking advantage of the strong dollar. "It's a very exciting time to be an Aussie travelling overseas because our currency is at near-record highs against, not just the US Dollar, but many of the world's major and minor currencies," she said. The Expedia NAB travellers' Foreign Currency rankings compared the Australian Dollar against the world's currencies over a 12-month period and the results revealed the 10 best value destinations for Australian travellers. BEST VALUE DESTINATIONS At number one for best value was Turkey, where the Australian Dollar has rose 22% against the Turkish Lira. Also high on the list for best value were the Tanzanian Shilling and the Argentine Peso which rose by 18% and 14% respectively. Australians wanting a tropical break have done well with Asia featuring strongly in the results. Vietnam and Thailand ranked third and fifth on the list while the Australian dollar grew by 16% against the Vietnamese Dong, 12% against the Thai Baht and 11% against the Hong Kong Dollar. The lowest gain for South East Asia was in Singapore where the Australian Dollar grew by just 3%. As a result of the strong dollar expedia searches for travel in Thailand were up by 73% and searches for travel in Vietnam have rose by 66%. The Australian Dollar had risen 10 per cent against the US Dollar in the last 12 months and although a continual favourite for Australian travellers it has only just scraped in to the top 10 list for best value. Despite not being the best for value a 44% increase has occurred for bookings to the USA. The most popular destinations were Honolulu, New York and Los Angeles. The report showed the Australian Dollar appreciating by 8% against the British Pound and 4% against the Euro but bookings through Expedia.com.au continued to rise for popular destinations London, Rome and Paris. In the past 12 months the Australian Dollar has lost 5% against the Swiss Franc and 2% against the New Zealand Dollar. Currency Strategist at National Australia Bank Emma Lawson said the resources boom and high commodity prices had benefit for the Australian Dollar. "The Australian Dollar has outperformed in the year as it benefits from the ongoing resource boom and high commodity prices. More recently it has been a little more volatile but we expect it to remain relatively strong across a broad range of currencies due to Australia's AAA status, and continued support from the resources sector," she said.
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