When it comes to holidays, Brits are a scrupulous nation of Organised Explorers - booking at least three months before departure and often purchasing flight and hotel packages, according to a new study.
The Expedia Travel Bookings Report is based on search and booking data across 19 Expedia sites worldwide. It provides an insight into the way that different nationalities book and manage their travel.
Mikael Andersson, vice president, Expedia EMEA, says, “The British have proved themselves as a nation of planners, with more than half meticulously securing their holidays well in advance with one in ten even going so far as to pre-book a space in the airport car park! True to form, our German neighbours also take a considered approach, booking well in advance in order to take full advantage of online deals. Meanwhile the French and Italians have a more laid-back attitude to buying their breaks, preferring an expensive last minute get-away to spoil themselves.”
Monday is rush hour with 16% of people across the UK logging on each week, particularly between seven and nine o’clock in the evening. Only one in ten (10%) wait until the weekend and book on a Saturday, while Sunday is the quietest day for activity on the site.
The British opt for value - aiming to get the most luxurious break for the best price. While 40% of hotel bookings are to a four-star property, the nation saved a total of £40million by booking hotel and flight packages on Expedia.co.uk last year.
Denmark and Germany share the cost-conscious crown, habitually booking the best deals and spending around 20% less than the average Brit on flight and hotel packages.
Brits bag spring breaks
Summer holiday is a bastion of British tradition, with a peak travel time appearing at the end of August - just before the school holidays end. With those opting for a traditional summer break most buy just flights and leave hotel purchase decisions for a later date.
Yet Easter is fast becoming the busiest weekend to travel, with the average length of a holiday for those booking flight and hotel packages being just four days.
In spite of the high Euro in recent times, over half the Top 20 most popular places to book are in Europe and include Paris, Rome, Amsterdam, Barcelona and Dublin. This trend is likely to grow with the current improvement in the Euro exchange rate.
UK destinations make up just under a quarter of the top 20 with London, Manchester and Edinburgh all making the list. Long haul locations such as New York, Las Vegas and Singapore make up the remaining quarter of the UK’s favourite places to visit.