Greece proving popular with British holidaymakers
Crete, Athens and Corfu are among the destinations growing in popularity for British holidaymakers this summer, according to new research.
Dubrovnik in Croatia is also a rising destination for UK travellers following the city being used as a recent location for the ‘Game of Thrones’ TV series and upcoming ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ movie.
But the US is seeing a slight decline in travel intent from the UK, possibly due to the strong US dollar and Donald Trump’s presidency, while Sri Lanka, the Philippines and Singapore are emerging destinations.
The data is revealed in the latest report from Sojern, which analyses travel intent data from 350 million traveller profiles.
Iceland has suffered a dramatic drop in travel intent this summer with Reykjavik plummeting at least 12 places in popularity for both UK and French travellers.
The Cuban capital of Havana is also losing its appeal as a trending destination.
The relaxation of US travel restrictions and increased American interest is resulting in Cuba being perceived as less exotic than it once was for the Europeans.
Tunisia has long been an affordable holiday destination for British holidaymakers but terrorist attacks in 2015 have negatively impacted inbound tourism.
“Yet, it seems that a recovery may be under way,” states the Sojern report. “We see Tunis jump 12 places to number 23 in the most popular cities for French travellers this summer.
“Istanbul, another city plagued by terrorist incidents in recent years, also rebounds in travel intent rising 10 spots in the top destinations for French travellers this summer.”
Sojern sees strong improvements and resilience on travel to Paris following terrorist attacks on the French capital, with year-on-year travel intent up by more than 40% from December 2016.
The report adds: “2017 looks to be a fresh start with travel intent up 49% in January and arrivals showing a similar trend, up 34% – the highest it’s been since the attacks of November 2015.”
Meanwhile, the share of long lead times by European travellers to the UK and France is the highest for three years with more than a quarter of people planning 120 days or more in advance.
More than half of European travellers plan trips to the UK and France over a month in advance of their departure date.
Travellers from Pakistan are the latest planners for trips to the UK with a lead time of only 41 days.
“These growing lead times could be a result of travellers today being some of the savviest consumers we have ever seen and millennials in particular planning, researching and booking further in advance,” the report states.
“We see some emerging destinations, such as Sri Lanka and Senegal, and it’s important for marketers to act upon these early trends in order to stay relevant and drive bookings.
“On the other hand, we see some destinations declining and perhaps marketers will decide that their ad budget is best spent focusing on areas that are higher up travellers’ agenda currently.”
• RCI has 40 resorts in Greece and its islands.