Squeeze on family finances restricts holiday options
Despite the improving economic outlook, families are continuing to feel the pinch and are compromising by cutting back on what they spend on their summer break, according to new research by HolidayTravelWatch, the independent consumer champion for quality holidays.
More than a third are planning to spend less than £500 on their holiday this year, while 40% will be ‘staycationing’ in the UK. And we’re on the look-out for holidays that represent good value for money too, with 42% of us turning to review sites such as Trip Advisor for essential information about a hotel or resort before making a booking.
Having beaten the January blues, February is the time of year when many of us start planning that all-important annual break, yet the state of the family finances is having a significant effect on our choice of holiday.
HolidayTravelWatch’s research shows that 48% of Brits are going to Europe for their 2014 vacation, while for many the ‘staycation’ reigns supreme, with 40% intending to holiday in the UK. More than a third of us (36%) will be spending less than £500 on our holiday and only 16% are prepared to spend more than £2,000 on their big getaway. Package/all-inclusive holidays, city breaks and beach/sun holidays came out as the most popular types of holiday, with only 8.5% saying they were looking to go on a cruise – which again indicates that families are having to make their budget stretch further.
On the other hand, if money was no object, Brits would choose to travel long-haul and explore the world. America emerged as the most popular destination, chosen by more than a fifth, followed by Australia (19%) and the Caribbean (16%).
“Our research shows that consumer confidence is low and when it comes to holidays people are being careful about how they spend their money,” says Frank Brehany, consumer director at HolidayTravelWatch.
“Families want to make their money go as far as possible so our advice is, if it looks too good to be true, it probably is. Shop around, research your holiday thoroughly, don’t just go on what it says in the brochure, and then, if everything stacks up and the price is right, you’ve probably found the best deal for you.”