Brits travelling to Europe on short breaks can save £100s on their Christmas shopping #Entrepreneur @MondoPlayer [Video]

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BRITS travelling to Europe on short breaks can save hundreds of pounds on their Christmas shopping.A study by Post Office Travel Money found UK visitors can save up to 15 per cent — almost £229 — on a basket of ten gift items, including Levi jeans, Clinique lipstick and an...

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BRITS travelling to Europe on short breaks can save hundreds of pounds on their Christmas shopping.

A study by Post Office Travel Money found UK visitors can save up to 15 per cent — almost £229 — on a basket of ten gift items, including Levi jeans, Clinique lipstick and an Apple iPad.

 Enjoy a break to Berlin and clean up with big savings on your Christmas shopping
Enjoy a break to Berlin and clean up with big savings on your Christmas shopping

Four of the five European cities surveyed — Berlin, Vienna, Lille and Riga — proved cheaper than London, where the overall total was £1,519.

Anyone heading to New York can save the most — the total there came out cheapest at £1,189.51. But as the difference between the totals in New York and Berlin was just £100, the German capital proved to be better value when travel costs were taken into account.

Then, of course, there are also the pre-Christmas sales bargains to be had in Europe as well as here.

Andrew Brown, of Post Office Travel Money, said: “It all comes down to what holiday shoppers want to buy. As in previous years the cost of most items is cheaper in New York than London, while it will pay to be very selective in Europe because costs vary significantly. But holidaymakers visiting Christmas markets in European cities will find bargains in the shops as well as the markets.”

 How much you could save on the basket of goods surveyed
How much you could save on the basket of goods surveyed

Shoppers can save more than 23 per cent on the London price (£399) of an iPad Mini 4 128GB in Lille (£306), or 17.2 per cent in Berlin (£331).

There are savings of more than 25 per cent on a GoPro Hero 7 silver camera in all the European cities surveyed. In Riga and Vienna, you can save up to 33 per cent, paying £186 compared with £279 in London.

Luxury cosmetic and fragrance brands like Marc Jacobs, Calvin Klein and Clinique also offer significant savings on the Continent.

Marc Jacobs Daisy eau de toilette (50ml) costs £55 in London but is over 22 per cent cheaper in Berlin (£43).

 Heading to New York will also bring savings over London for the gifts

Alan MacGregor Ewing

Heading to New York will also bring savings over London for the gifts

Calvin Klein CK One (50ml) costs £29 in London and £16 in Riga — 44 per cent less. And you can save 25 per cent or more on Clinique eye shadow palettes in Riga and Vienna.

But Andrew warned: “Our research found big price variations across Europe and bargain hunters could find themselves paying more than in the UK, particularly for fashion items.

“We found examples of Levi’s 501 jeans costing 74 per cent more in Copenhagen, while Ugg boots could be over 37 per cent more in the Danish capital than in London.

“At the till, shoppers should also think twice before reaching for their plastic, as they risk extra non-Sterling transaction charges.”

Berlin’s spectacular display above the Brandenburg Gate

PASSPORT PANIC

PANICKED Brits have applied for more than 3million fast- track passport renewals in the past five years, costing them an extra £130million,  research shows.

Figures obtained under the Freedom of Information Act show that between April 2013 and April 2018 there were almost 1.4million applications for the one-day passport service, and nearly 1.8 million for the one-week service.

Research carried out by MoneySavingExpert revealed  the high volume of premium applications suggest many are ending up paying extra simply because they have left applications to the last minute.

Following price rises in March this year, the one-day passport application now costs £177 – that’s£101.50 more than the standard application.

Infants at risk from high cost of formula

 Research has raised fears that unsafe versions of baby milk are being used in low-income and vulnerable families

Getty – Contributor

Research has raised fears that unsafe versions of baby milk are being used in low-income and vulnerable families

THE high price of infant formula poses a potential risk to child health as parents desperately try to cut costs, an inquiry by MPs has found.

The research has raised fears that unsafe versions of baby milk are being used in low-income and  vulnerable families.

Parents and healthcare professionals told the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) that they or families they knew often went without essential items in order to be able to afford infant formula.

The Infant Feeding and Inequalities inquiry heard that families on tight budgets could resort to unsafe practices in order to feed their babies, such as skipping ­bottles, watering down formula or adding cereal.

The price of formula was found to range from £6.44 to £13.52 per week for powdered varieties and between £24.47 and £32.20 for ready-to-feed products.

One parent told the inquiry: ­“Formula is incredibly expensive. We struggled at times when we reached the end of my maternity pay.” Another said: “We are both professionals in public sector jobs. I imagine it’s almost impossible for low-income families to cope with the costs.”

The APPG’s chairwoman Alison Thewliss said: “For too long, powerful multinational companies have been pushing the boundaries and circumventing existing legislation to promote their products to ­parents and families.

“The more we see new aggressive marketing techniques, the more we see ever-higher prices for formula milk, which is ultimately borne by the consumer.”

Its report said  all infant formula must have a composition that ­conforms to UK regulations.

The report recommends further monitoring as well as a ban on the advertising of formula.