Sunny summer weather prompted a 9% rise in ‘staycations’ taken in July over the same month last year, according to figures being released today.
Spending hit £1.8 billion over the month as a result of rise in the number of domestic overnight holiday trips boosted by good summer weather, VisitEngland figures show.
The tourist board’s latest staycation research, being issued today at World Travel Market, shows that 12% of people said they had changed their holiday plans as a result of the weather to spend more of their holidays in the UK.
18-34 year olds (23%) and families (19%) were more likely to have changed their plans because of the weather and more than half of all holidaymakers (56%) in England experienced good weather this year.
Seventeen per cent said they were more likely to take a holiday in England in 2014 because of the weather this summer.
The staycation research, which asks over 1,000 Britons about their attitudes towards taking a break at home, shows that levels of optimism about the economy are the highest since the downturn began.
The number of people who believe we are over the worst of the economic downturn jumped from 13% in February to 29% by September.
New tourism minister Helen Grant said: “The domestic tourism sector has a big role to play in helping with the economic recovery so I am delighted that overnight holiday visits is up.
“England has such a diverse offer for holidays at home – from tranquil countryside and coastal towns to vibrant cities – and I will do all I can to help the industry continue to grow.”
VisitEngland chief executive James Berresford said: “Clearly the 588 hours of sunshine this year has been a boost for domestic tourism.
“Operators have reported increased visitor numbers this year and are seeing positive forward bookings for autumn.
“With the 400th anniversary of the birth of Shakespeare, the Tour de France setting off from Yorkshire, as well as a whole host of exciting events, new attractions and hotel openings, I’m confident that the trend to holiday at home will go from strength to strength.”
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