Cheap Holiday? Head To The Beach

21 March 2017
Co-author: Regina Collins
According to a survey by Roy Morgan Research, Australians are spoilt for choice when it comes to cheap holidays.

Australia is an island, so it makes sense that the latest Roy Morgan Holiday Tracking Survey found Aussies are spoilt for choice when it comes to booking a cheap holiday in a beautiful location.

“With almost 60,000km of coastline (including islands), Australia has something for every kind of beach-holiday lover,” said Norman Morris, Industry Communications Director, Roy Morgan Research.

“Resort-filled coastal playgrounds, family-friendly seaside hamlets, surfing hot-spots, remote tropical islands and magical marine wonderlands: it’s all here, and – as the latest data from Roy Morgan Research – not necessarily as expensive as one might expect.

“While every state boasts an abundance of coastal destinations, Queensland is perhaps most famous around the world, thanks to the Great Barrier Reef.

“And although it’s certainly possible to pay the big bucks for a beach holiday in the Sunshine State (Port Douglas and the Whitsundays being two high-profile examples), it is just as possible to go the budget-friendly route somewhere like Fraser Island or Bundaberg.”

Beach holidays for around $150/night

According to the survey, the average cost per night of a domestic holiday is $151/night per person, which includes all expenses: food, accommodation, travel, entertainment, etc.

However, a number of Australia’s most beautiful locations are significantly cheaper, on average, than that.

Across the country, the most affordable holiday locations include:

NSW Per night cost, average
  • North Coast
  • Port Macquarie
  • Forster
  • Coffs Harbour
  • Taree
  • Port Stephens
  • South Coast
  • Gerringong
  • Merimbula
  • Nowra
  • Illawarra
  • Wollongong
  • Shellharbour
  • Kiama
  • Mornington Peninsula
  • Portsea
  • Flinders
  • The Lakes
  • Lakes Entrance
  • Mellacoota
  • Torquay
  • Lorne
  • Port Fairy
  • Fraser Island
  • Bundaberg
  • Childers
  • Lady Eliot Island
  • Hervey Bay
  • Gympie
  • Maryborough
  • Dongara
  • Geraldton
  • Kalbarri
  • Ningaloo
  • Coral Bay
  • Exmouth
  • Esperance
  • Yorke Peninsula
  • McLaren Vale
  • Victor Harbour
  • Goolwa
  • Cape Jervis
  • Eyre Peninsula
  • Port Lincoln
  • Ceduna
  • Bay of Fires
  • St Helens
  • Swansea
  • Strahan
  • Queenstown

Source: Roy Morgan Research (Aust), July 2014 – June 2016, n=20,518 Base: Australian holiday-goers 14+.

NSW Cheap Beach Holidays

Feel like a beach holiday in NSW? We’ve picked out a few of our staff writers’ favourite destinations for a cheap holiday:

  1. North Coast: From great surfing beaches and World Heritage rainforests to playful dolphins and dramatic volcanic hinterland, the North Coast of NSW is the perfect place for both relaxation and adventure.
  2. Port Macquarie: Port Macquarie boasts a number of different activities which are perfect for families with kids. Some of these include a visit to the world’s first Koala Hospital and Sea Acres Rainforest Boardwalk.
  3. Coffs Harbour: Coffs Harbour is a haven for whales, turtles, and grey nurse sharks. Some fun activities to do while in Coffs Harbour include a trip to the Butterfly House, and visiting the Big Banana, an iconic Australian landmark.

VIC Cheap Beach Holidays

  1. Mornington Peninsula: Want some bragging rights at your local golf club? Then you’ll want to visit Australia’s #1 golf destination. If that’s not your style, don’t fret – the Mornington Peninsula also offers beautiful beaches and hinterland.
  2. Portsea: Portsea’s location at the tip of the Mornington Peninsula means you can be at the beach just minutes after waking up! Learn to scuba dive, or trade swimmers for hiking in the tranquil bush with the native animals.
  3. Flinders: Flinders has been named as having the “cleanest air in the world”. Try a coastal walk along Bushrangers Bay among native woodland or indulge in gourmet cuisine.

QLD Cheap Beach Holidays

  1. Fraser Island: Whether you’re a rugged camping type or prefer a luxury resort, the crystal clear Lake McKenzie is guaranteed to steal a piece of your heart. The laid-back Queensland spirit is what makes Fraser Island a World Heritage Listed spot.
  2. Bundaberg: “If the Great Barrier Reef was a marathon, Bundaberg would be the starting line.” (Tourism QLD) The perfect activity for families is the annual turtle nesting and hatching tours.
  3. Childers: From history and heritage to culture and food, Childers has everything. Only a skip, hop and a jump away from the beach, Childers boasts some of the most delicious macadamia ice cream and sugar cane smoothies.

Cheap vs expensive beach holidays

In contrast to all the budget-friendly options, there are also plenty of expensive beach holidays to choose from.

When it comes to luxury beach getaways, it’s not surprising that Lord Howe Island, Philip Island, and Port Douglas top the highest average cost per night:

  • NSW – Lord Howe Island
  • Victoria – Philip Island
  • Queensland – Port Douglas
  • Western Australia – Broome
  • South Australia – Kangaroo Island
  • Tasmania – Freycinet National Park

Travel insurance for an Australian beach holiday

If your next holiday is a beach holiday, you might want to consider taking out travel insurance.

Here at Canstar, we research and rate over 80+ domestic travel insurance policies available to cover you in Australia for cancellation fees, lost luggage and other travel mishaps. Compare Travel Insurance Policies with CANSTAR today!

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