The strength of the euro, worries about the economy, the Terminal 5 fiasco and rising fuel costs have all combined to increase the appeal holidaying in Britain rather than going abroad. All good news for Brighton & Hove.
Lastminute.com said that its domestic holiday bookings were up 16% year on year, with the most popular destinations being Edinburgh, London, Jersey, Glasgow and Belfast. Meanwhile, Advantage – an organisation representing 700 independent travel agents, reported a 5% fall in bookings year on year for overseas package holidays.
According to tourism quango VisitBritain, domestic tourism is now Britain's fifth largest industry generating £85bn a year. In Brighton & Hove, with 8.5 million visitors, it generates over £400m per annum and supports 13,000 jobs
The strength of the euro against sterling has dramatically increased the cost of holidaying abroad but drastically reduced the cost for Europeans visiting Britain.
Increases in airline fuel surcharges and disillusionment with airports are also playing their part, say industry analysts. The memory of delays at Heathrow's Terminal 5 in March is still fresh and the problems have continued with a reported 930 bags a day still going missing.
This week's Guardian travel section was entirely devoted to 100 of the best British holiday breaks. Brighton featured in the best citites to visit section.
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