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Who will win the Amazing Hotel Race?

Aussies are turning their back on Mickey and re-igniting their passion for Bintang.

Aussies are turning their back on Mickey and re-igniting their passion for Bintang.

The weaker Australian dollar is to blame, or at least partly, according to the latest Hotels.com Hotel Price Index, which reveals that Aussies’ long love affair with the US is starting to fizzle as Asia once again steals travellers’ hearts.

The latest HPI report compares hotel prices in the first half of 2014 with the same period last year and reveals that Australians are clearly looking to stretch their dollar further on holidays, as Asian cities took out half of the top 10 overseas destinations they have been jet setting to this year. It’ll be no surprise then to reveal that accommodation in Asia took out 17 of the 20 most affordable destinations in the HPI.

Trafalgar_Vietnamese Junk Boat Ha Long Bay KarryOnWhile the destinations in Asia that Aussies are heading to are varied, long-time favourites like Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam and Cambodia all come out on top.

The top five destinations providing Aussies with the best value for money for room nights in 2014 were Pattaya ($70), Hanoi ($71), Phenom Penh ($71), Siem Reap ($72)  and Cebu ($74).

Lowest 20 average hotel prices in H1 2014 compared with H1 2013 paid by Australian travellers: 

Destination

H1 2014

% change

Pattaya

$70

-17%

Hanoi

$71

-2%

Phnom Penh

$71

5%

Siem Reap

$72

10%

Cebu

$74

-5%

Chiang Mai

$79

-4%

Manila

$84

4%

Ho Chi Minh City

$86

-4%

Bangkok

$87

-8%

Hoi an

$89

5%

Phuket

$108

3%

Krabi

$111

-14%

Warsaw

$118

22%

Penang

$119

-12%

Buenos Aires

$121

-2%

Delhi

$121

11%

Rotorua

$124

15%

Jakarta

$124

-7%

Kuala Lumpur

$124

3%

Beijing

$129

5%

Predictably, Bali, with an average of $130 per night, took out the number one spot for Australian holidaymakers heading overseas.

“This latest report shows Aussies are opting more and more for pocket friendly destinations such as Ho Chi Minh City and Bangkok. With the weaker dollar, Aussies have been travelling to destinations where their travel funds stretch further. A lavish experience on a lemonade budget beats having to count every cent when travelling,” Hotels.com Katherine Cole, Regional Director, ANZ & Singapore said.

US properties aren’t doing Aussies any favours, with a whopping 93% of destinations implementing double-digit increases in hotel rates according to the HPI results. With an average of US$137 per night – up 5% year on year – it represents the second highest growth rate over the past decade for a half-year period, and only one point lower than the highest half-year index ever recorded for America. Meanwhile, the global average is up 4%.

LasVegasPreviously popular hot spots are therefore losing ground with Australians, who are clearly snubbing higher cost destinations. Las Vegas dropped four places to ninth position and Los Angeles fell six spots to land in at number 12, while San Francisco slid three places to number 14 and Honolulu sits in at eighth after dropping one spot. Anaheim, home to Disneyland, tumbled off the top destination table entirely.  Even New York, an Australian bucket-list favourite, took a short fall to second place, replaced by Bintang-for-a-buck destination, Bali.

“With more expensive regions like the US and Europe slipping in favour with Aussie travellers, we expect Asia to continue to feature prominently in Australians’ holiday plans.  As always though, Australians will continue to make exceptions for bucket list destinations like New York, London and Paris,” Ms Cole said.

“A weaker dollar has also seen Aussies travelling more at home, with many popular holiday spots across the country offering very affordable accommodation prices.”

Top overseas destinations for Australian travellers in H1 2014:

Rank

Destination

H1 2013 rank

1

Bali

4

2

New York

1

3

Singapore

3

4

London

2

5

Paris

8

6

Tokyo

10

7

Hong Kong

12

8

Honolulu

7

9

Las Vegas

5

10

Kuala Lumpur

15

11

Auckland

9

12

Los Angeles

6

13

Bangkok

13

14

San Francisco

11

15

Rome

14

16

Dubai

16

17

Patong

*

18

Phuket

*

19

Queenstown

18

20

Ho Chi Minh City

*

 

However, It’s not all low-cost when it comes to holidays in Asia, the HPI reveals. Eight of the 12 destinations where 4-star accommodation was available for $150 a night or less, were found to be – you guessed it – in Asia.

The star-rating that could be purchased with $150 a night or less on average in the world’s top cities in H1 2014: 

Destination $150
Bali

4

Bangkok

4

Beijing

4

Budapest

4

Cape Town

4

Delhi

4

Frankfurt

4

Guangzhou

4

Jakarta

4

Mumbai

4

 Download the full Hotel Price Index report here.

Do you think Bali will be bumped off from the top spot anytime soon?