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The Price of Love

Savvy Shoppers Will Skip the Valentine’s Price Hike this Year.

Paris, the city for lovers, is a top destination for a romantic Valentine’s Day away. Fine dining, world-class tourist sites and top notch shopping are just some of the attractions that will draw romantic couples from across the world to the banks of the Seine.

But be warned! Some travel agents are set to hike prices by up to 43 per cent for a romantic weekend break this Valentine’s Day.

 

Savvy deals commissioned independent research that looked at how much you will pay for a visit to Paris over the weekends of 7th and 14th February. We wanted to find out how you can enjoy a romantic trip away without breaking the bank.

A couple travelling to Paris for Valentine’s weekend will pay an average of £508 for their travel and accommodation. Early lovebirds that travel the weekend before will shell out only £411 ­ a massive saving of 24 per cent!

Internet sites offer the cheapest weekend deals ­ but are the worst offenders when it comes to imposing Valentine’s price hikes. The average cost of a trip to Paris over the weekend of the 14th February from one of the country’s leading Internet sites was £421. The average charge for the same trip a week earlier was £294 ­ a whopping 40 per cent less.

Travel agent chains will charge more than the Internet sites. The average cost of a Valentine’s weekend trip to Paris booked through them is £544. The same travel agents were charging £422 for the same trip a weekend earlier. This may be a lower Valentine’s weekend hike of just 29 per cent ­ but overall the high street chains offered a worse deal than the travel websites.

Independent travel agents were generally a little more expensive than their chain rivals when booking a trip to Paris with their charge for a normal weekend in the French capital being £437. The independent agents, though, imposed a slightly lower Valentine’s premium of 22 per cent ­ leading them to charge £532 for a weekend away covering the 14th February, slightly less than their big chain rivals.

 

Regional rip-offs

We went to the regions and asked independent travel agents about the cost of a weekend to Paris and compared their prices to those offered by branches of the big chain travel agents in the same area.

Level of Valentine's Weekend mark-up around the Cities




City

Average cost
of a weekend
in Paris
(Feb 6-8)

Average cost
of a weekend
in Paris
(Feb 13-15)



"Valentine's
Tax"

Southampton

£542.00

£668.00

23%

Bristol

£368.00

£441.00

20%

Exeter

£449.00

£461.00

3%

Cardiff

£446.00

£582.00

30%

London

£472.00

£452.00

22%

Leeds

£425.00

£502.00

18%

Newcastle

£426.00

£553.00

30%

Edinburgh

£486.00

£533.00

10%

Birmingham

£421.00

£539.00

28%

Manchester

£399.00

£518.00

30%

Glasgow

£455.00

£537.00

18%

Aberdeen

£404.00

£478.00

18%

Best High Street Deals for a Valentine's Weekend away

City

Retailer

Cost

Southampton

Thomas Cook

£516.00

Bristol

Local Travel Agent

£399.80

Exeter

Thomas Cook

£275.00

Cardiff

Going Places

£445.00

London

Local Travel Agent

£496.00

Leeds

Thomas Cook

£476.00

Newcastle

Local Travel Agent

£498.00

Edinburgh

Thomas Cook

£466.00

Birmingham

Local Travel Agent

£496.00

Manchester

Local Travel Agent

£488.00

Glasgow

Local Travel Agent

£434.00

Aberdeen

Thomas Cook

£416.80

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