WTM 2013: Third of parents would pay fines for term-time holidays, finds report

WTM 2013: Third of parents would pay fines for term-time holidays, finds report

More than a third of parents are happy to pay a £60 fine for taking their children out of school during term-time, the World Travel Market industry report has revealed.

WTM polled more than 1,000 holidaymakers who have holidayed for more than seven days this year, of which 55% were aware of new legislation implemented by education secretary Michael Gove to fine families £60 per child for taking holidays that clash with term-times.

514 of those polled had children and more than a third (37%) said they would be prepared to pay the fine to take their child out of school for holidays during term-time.

Reed Travel Exhibitions senior director, World Travel Market, Simon Press said: "The cost of school holidays in term-times has long been a bugbear for many families who complain of rip-off prices in peak season.

"But the travel industry has to price its products according to demand and more people across Europe, not just in the UK, want to take holidays in July and August, at Easter and at Christmas, so prices rise during these times, which exacerbates the price difference."

"However the industry does what it can to help cash-strapped families and package tour operators offer thousands of free child places for early bookers and lower fares for children.

"The trade is also lobbying over the issue, such as Travelzoo and it's e-petition to Parliament, which aims to fight the parent trap of government legislation, taxes and higher school holiday price."

This year's report also indicated that the trend of holidaying in the UK looks set to continue into 2014.

When UK consumers were asked where they holidayed this year, the UK came out on top with more than twice as many entries than Spain and three times as many as France.

BBC journalist Stephen Sackur, who presented the report, said: "Three in ten are citing the good weather in 2013 as a reason to holiday in the UK next year.


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