Analysis: Bookings look bright for 2015

Analysis: Bookings look bright for 2015

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Almost half of UK adults expect to take an overseas holiday this year and a third intend to spend more than in 2014. By Ian Taylor

Half of UK adults who have taken a holiday in the past plan a break overseas in 2015, according to research for Travel Weekly.

The study by consumer research company TNS found 49% intend to take a foreign holiday, up two percentage points on a year ago – 31% saying they were ‘very likely’ to have an overseas holiday and 18% ‘quite likely’. A further 8% were undecided (chart: ‘Likelihood of an Overseas Holiday in Next Year’, page 54).

The exclusive research forms a major part of the Travel Weekly Insight Annual Report 2014, which is now available.

Those aged 45-54 appear most confident about booking a holiday abroad, with 37% ‘very likely’ and 58% ‘likely’ to do so this year – up 12 percentage points on a year ago.

However, the overall likelihood of consumers booking an overseas trip was just two percentage points up year on year and some age groups and UK regions showed a small decrease in sentiment on last year. This was most marked among 55 to 64-year-olds, whose expectation of booking an overseas holiday was down five percentage points year on year.

Adults living in the south of England appear more confident than elsewhere, with 55% likely to book a holiday abroad in 2015, up from 51% a year ago, against 47% in the Midlands and 43% in the north. This was despite a deterioration in expectation of booking a holiday abroad among consumers in London – down from 58% likely a year ago to 55% in the year ahead.

More than one in three (36%) of those expecting to take a holiday abroad anticipated spending more than last year, against 14% expecting to spend less. One in 10 said they would spend ‘a lot more’ (chart: ‘Likely Spending on Next Overseas Holiday’).

The difference between those who expect to spend more and those to spend less was up by nine percentage points to 22%, with almost half (47%) of the total who plan to go away expecting to spend about the same.

The sharpest improvement in anticipated spending was among high-income households, who showed a 21-point increase in the number expecting to spend more over those planning to spend less. However, there was a 15-point improvement year on year in the north and a 14-point improvement in London.

Younger adults aged 16-34 showed a 14-point improvement in spending intention year on year, and adults in full‑time work a 10-point rise.

Crucially, more than four out of five respondents (84%) who generally take at least one overseas holiday a year were planning a holiday in 2015, up from 81% a year ago – giving grounds for cautious optimism that the market could see some growth.

The study found seven in 10 or 68% of adults took a holiday or short break away from home in the course of the year, down from 73% in 2013. TNS group director Tom Costley, who oversaw the study, described this as “a significant decrease”.

The decline appears to be in domestic trips, with 58% saying they took at least one domestic holiday in 2014 against 62% in 2013; and 57% said they were likely to do so in the next 12 months.*TNS questioned 1,985 UK adults face to face as part of its TNS Omnibus survey at the end of October.

The Travel Weekly Insight Annual Report 2014 is available from


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