Our holiday habits are changing as we focus on our big break away hols
Like so much going on in our lives, the pandemic also changed the way we think about holidays, writes Ruth Brindle.
Europe’s travel/tech leader lastminute.com website reports last year saw many people spend more money taking longer breaks, despite them having cost of living concerns.
Travellers are spreading the cost of their travel and are, of course, still looking for bargains.
The company recently launched "Small budget, big holidays" web page, which offers holiday breaks for under £500 so that consumers can this year still enjoy their favourite destinations as well as explore new locations.
For 2023 city break bookings and longer stay holiday breaks (four-seven nights) share is at 40 per cent versus 31 per cent in 2019.
Historically, three-night stays have been most popular.
For sun and beach bookings, seven nights continues to be the most popular, but eight-plus night stays have increased by 11 per cent year-on-year.
This country remains the top destination for Brits looking for easy sun and beach breaks.
Costa Blanca sees seven nights including flights and breakfast at Sol Pelicanos Ocas from £509pp for June.
Greek and Turkish coasts
These destinations gained popularity during summer 2022, such demand looking set to continue during 2023 booking trends.
Beautiful islands Rhodes and Kos have seen an uplift of 91 per cent and 95 per cent respectively in 2022 compared to 2019.
Breaks here available at just £679 in June for seven nights at 5* Rhodes Bay Hotel & Spa including flights and breakfast.
The company is also seeing the popularity of Italy rise for city breaks, overtaking Netherlands and Spain.
Rome: This Italian gem can be discovered in style for £289pp for three nights at the 4* Royal Court Hotel with hotel and flights in June.
As the market bounces back from two years of disruption, many are looking to enjoy their savings to tick off the bucket list destinations.
Compared to 2019, long haul destinations climbed up the ranking in 2022 with Maldives +285 per cent, Mexico +100 per cent, Mauritius +76 per cent and Dominican Republic +69 per cent.
Examples of popular long-haul choices include El Cid La Ceiba Beach all inclusive in Mexico over seven nights for two adults.
Including 3* accommodation, economy flights from London Gatwick, all inclusive May 31 to June 7 costs £949pp at Sun Island Resort & Spa, Maldives.
Seven nights for two adults, including 4* accommodation, economy flights from London Heathrow (baggage included), half-board, March 21 to 28 costs £1,699pp.
Many people find this sort of holiday desirable as there are no nasty add-on surprise costs.
They already account for almost a third (32 per cent) of 2023 sales for sun and beach destinations.
Company analysis shows the top destinations with the lowest cost per night hotels are Krakow, Prague, Agadir, Istanbul and Dalaman.
Known as a great value city break, three-night package stays in Krakow start from less than £200pp.
And Istanbul, for those looking to lap up Turkish culture, offers four-night stay in 4* Pell Palace Hotel & Spa with flights and breakfast included in June from just £289pp.
If you can be flexible on flight times you can save money.
Research reveals afternoon flights for city breaks are on average cheaper.
It’s best, however, to take an early morning flight to your sun and beach destination.
Flights departing 5 to 7am are on average ten per cent cheaper than those leaving between noon and 5pm.
New in Corfu
Upgrades have been added to a growing brand of luxury hotels.
Opening its doors in May is new Kerkyra Blue Hotel & Spa following complete luxury five star metamorphosis.
An investment of over six million Euros over winter and early spring will see it become part of Louis Hotels Elegant Collection.
And having stayed at two of Louis Hotels’ Cyprus offers in 2022, I can testify these hotels offer a great all-round experience.
Guests can expect redesigned and renovated rooms and suites and dine-around premium all-inclusive experience with four restaurants and three bars.
There is also new five-star spa, all set within spacious grounds and prime location directly on the beach, just three km from Corfu town.
The location will also offer dedicated adults-only sections around the site and in restaurants.
All 240 rooms of the hotel will be fully renovated and redesigned to five star level.
There are superior double rooms for couples, deluxe studios with separate sitting areas and outdoor patios as well as superior family rooms with sliding doors and superior triple rooms.
Guests can enjoy premium all-inclusive culinary experience with variety of restaurants offering live cooking stations.
Also on offer will be kids’ buffet and theme nights and entertainment from all over the world at the hotel’s main restaurant as well as Italian, Asian and Greek fine dining
The hotel has two outdoor pools, including new Ioanian Breeze pool with spa features and children’s pool.
The hotel’s existing swimming pool and surrounding pool areas will be revamped with new cabanas, sunbeds and umbrellas forming part of The Pavilion chic outdoor all-day area.
The beach area will also be further upgraded with gazebos and umbrellas, where you can enjoy food and drinks in privacy by the sea.
As if that is not enough, the new spa will offer a complete personalised experience in new treatment rooms.
There will be hammam, rejuvenating sauna, relaxation area and exterior seafront massage facilities.
A superior double room including breakfast costs from £152 for two people.
To find out more visit www.louiskerkyrablue.com or www.louishotels.com websites.