Website tour consolidator, Door2Tour, examines trends in how people search online for their day trips, short breaks and holidays and they have recently published results which show a significant increase in people searching for coach holidays. The rise in internet hits for terms such as ‘UK coach holidays’ is matched by bookings, with a 65% increase in UK coach break sales reported in the first three months of this year, compared with the same period in 2010. Increasing flight charges appear to be a core consideration, in tandem with the financial uncertainties in otherwise popular Eurozone destinations such as Ireland, Greece and Portugal.
The UK’s seaside resorts pull the biggest market share and not just for the south coast resorts, where the weather is likely to be more favourable. Tour packages for events are additionally seeing a huge rise in interest, with coach tour bookings for the Edinburgh Military Tattoo up a staggering 135% from last year and London city breaks for the theatre, Royal Ascot, the Chelsea Flower Show and Wimbledon all seeing large increases in demand. Sales for capital breaks have risen 77% from last year and it is a trend which is mirrored in the UK’s most popular cities.
Door2Tour PR and Marketing coordinator, Rachel Jones, explains the attractions of coach holidays in terms of not just saving money but also in minimising the potential risks associated with overseas travel. She concludes that “(customers) will not be hit with any hidden extras such as airport taxes, car parking fees, etc. as everything is included in one great value price.” Clearly in a time of uncertainty in finances and in travel and with the potential for pitfalls increasing with the distance travelled, the increasing trend in searching and booking UK coach tours represents a serious sea-change in the UK tour and travel industry.
Image: Staines Crusader Leyland Leopard – Plaxton, MJH 275L in Chelmsford c 1978 by sludgegulper, on Flickr