First Choice holidays will make all its holidays “all inclusive” from next summer in a bid to save money.
Its packages will include flights, in-resort transfers, hotel accommodation, three meals a day and unlimited local drinks as standard.
Around 65 percent of the company’s holidays are already all-inclusive.
First Choice says the move will make it the UK’s first mainstream holiday company to specialise in “all-inclusive” only. It is targeting the deals at budget conscious UK holidaymakers, claiming a “price test” showed a typical family could save more than £500 a week by buying an all-inclusive option, compared to buying meals, snacks, travel and entertainment obtained independently.
The move shifts against the tide of the past decade of building your own holiday.
The low-cost airline revolution and growing online bookings have exposed travel companies’ profit margins. However some package companies have fought back strongly by raising their product offering, led by luxury specialist, Sandals, which was voted “World’s Leading All-Inclusive Company” by World Travel Awards for the past ten years.
Figures from the Office for National Statistics show the package holiday market peaked in 2002, when 20.6m were taken. But last year it had slipped to 17.9m.
First Choice meanwhile says its research shows that demand for all-inclusive holidays has grown by 32 percent in five years.
Johan Lundgren, managing director of TUI UK & Ireland, the parent company of First Choice, said the move was a first.
“There is no mainstream holiday company currently offering a completely all-inclusive portfolio.”
Maria Whiteman, CEO of Directline Holidays commented: “Following the merger of Thomson and First Choice this decision has probably been made with the aim of clearly differentiating the brands and creating some media attention.”
“The tough financial market has made consumers more price conscious and All Inclusive holidays can allow consumers to budget more effectively than some traditional Half Board or Bed and Breakfast options,” she added.