The Staycation: Will UK Tourists Holiday at Home this Summer?
The staycation, as it has become known, has become a buzzword in the UK media. With events like the Queen’s Jubilee and the Olympic Games, UK hoteliers are hoping to enjoy a rise in domestic tourism – but how effective will the staycation trend be?
2012 is a unique year for the UK tourism industry. With no historical precedent, analysts have found it impossible to predict trends, leaving industry pundits to quarrel over the economic potential of the staycation trend.
With summer now upon us and school holidays about to start, consumer surveys and booking patterns are at last providing some more reliable information – however, the overall picture remains “fragmented” at present.
Strong Demand for Staycations
Last month we reported that “Holiday at Home”, the government-backed advertising campaign designed to increase domestic tourism in 2012 has failed to make a sizeable impact on much of the UK public.
Yet, despite this, a number of recent surveys suggest that hoteliers can still prepare for an influx of staycationers this summer.
Research from M&S Money reveals that 54% of Brits are planning to stay in the UK this summer, while a survey conducted amongst the hotel guests at Best Western Swan Hotel, Somerset reveals that 86% plan to holiday in the UK during the next 12 months.
A key issue affecting the staycation trend is price. M&S Money revealed that a London staycation is 25% more expensive than the average beach holiday abroad – yet, many British consumers perceive a UK holiday to be cheaper. In fact, out of the 54% of Brits mentioned above, 26 per cent are holidaying at home because they felt it would be less expensive.
The cost of a week in London, for those wanting to celebrate the Olympics in the capital, will set Brits back £1,631, compared to an average £1,298 for a sun, sea and sand holiday overseas.
The research, which compared the cost of a week in nine popular beach holiday destinations against a week in London, found that Alicante in Spain offers the best value at £927 for a week. All other locations making up the top five were also within Europe.
The ten destinations in order of descending value
- Alicante, Spain – £927
- Marseille, France – £1,059
- Gouves, Crete – £1,061
- Bodrum, Turkey – £1,102
- Faro, Portugal – £1,104
- Split, Croatia – £1,133
- Hua Hin, Thailand – £1,422
- London, UK – £1,631
- Bridgetown, Barbados – £1,836
- Daytona Beach, Florida, USA – £2,034
A UK holiday is eighth on the list, at £1,631, due to relatively high accommodation costs and the large amount of spending money needed; just under £600 (£596) for a week, which accounts for 37 per cent of the entire cost of this holiday.
M&S data reveals that holidaymakers are budgeting an average of £41 spending money per person per day, or £287 per week. However, for the ten holidays studied, people are underestimating the amount of spending money needed per person by an average of £50, with holidaymakers budgeting £318 per week, compared to the £368 required.