The first Saturday of January is typically the most popular day of the year for travel bookings but there had been fears that this year could see demand dampened by cost-of-living pressures. Over the weekend, Barrhead reported that 60 per cent of bookings were for summer this year with top months to travel being June, July, August and September. But the Glasgow-based travel group said last-minute getaways were also popular, with more than one in five new bookings due to depart before April, as people look to “escape the winter blues”.
Top destinations and holidays booked during the first week of the year included Tenerife, Mallorca, Lanzarote and Alicante with Miami, Orlando and Canada among the top long-haul destinations. Sales from the weekend also suggest that people are looking to get away for longer breaks this year, with around 45 per cent of bookings being for ten nights or more, with 10 per cent being for 18 nights or more.
Jacqueline Dobson, president of Barrhead Travel, said: “For many, it’s important to have a holiday in the diary as something to look forward to. We know January is a very popular time to book and get a trip locked in because there are so many fantastic offers to take advantage of as well as being able to benefit from low deposits and flexible payment options. Over the weekend we saw a record number of bookings.”