Britons are determined as ever to enjoy our holidays as one third of the country plans to go abroad twice this year despite the cost of living crisis
- Travel agents have said there is little government engagement with the industry
- Average UK adult spends at least £200 on goods and services before a holiday
Despite interest rate rises and the ongoing cost of living crisis, the majority of British holidaymakers will make at least two overseas trips during 2023, according to the trade body representing independent travel agents.
But Julia Lo Bue-Said, chief executive of the Advantage Travel Partnership, said the government still does not recognise the importance of outbound travel to the UK economy.
‘Our members received no support during the pandemic and even now with spending on travel almost back to pre-pandemic levels there is still precious little government engagement with the industry,’ said Lo Bue-Said, speaking at Advantage’s annual conference in the Spanish resort of Benidorm.
‘There is a risk that with the euphoria around a positive trading environment, that the travel industry’s resilience is also its weakness when it comes to government recognition and support.
‘And with a general election looming, we run the risk of a government now making decisions based on the electorate going to the polls, and not on the needs of businesses’.
The majority of British holidaymakers will make at least two overseas trips during 2023, according to the trade body representing independent travel agents
Despite the industry bouncing back after the pandemic, travel agents say the Government is failing to recognise the importance of outbound travel to the UK economy
Advantage’s One Poll survey of 2,000 adults showed that a third of respondents said they planned two holidays this year.
Advantage Travel Partnership – which represents 350 UK travel companies – recently joined forces with The Specialist Travel Association (Aito) to form a lobbying arm to raise the industry’s profile.
‘A senior government official recently said to me they were surprised High Street travel agents still exist,’ said Lo Bue-Said.
‘It’s not the first time we have heard this and it’s simply not an option to let people running the country to think in this way.’
Advantage Travel Partnership also released research showing the average UK adult spends at least £200 on goods and services before leaving the country to go on holiday.
It said the study, which covered purchases such as clothes and airport parking, disproves the theory that the outbound travel sector benefits overseas destinations more than the UK.
Advantage’s nationwide research revealed people in the northeast are the biggest spenders on their pre-holiday purchases, splurging an average of £220 before jetting off from the UK.