Recently published research shows that we’re taking more trips abroad than ever before. While it used to be that jetting off abroad even once a year was considered luxurious, things are changing rapidly in the world of international travel.
Thanks to Europe’s more generous paid holiday entitlements (in comparison to North America’s paltry two weeks a year on average) and a partial recovery from the financial meltdown, these days the average Brit is likely to head off to foreign climes twice a year.
The latest findings from online travel agent Sunshine strongly suggest that the worst of the downturn are over for British citizens. Unemployment, which peaked at 8% only a few short years ago, now stands at a healthier 6.5%. While this is still some way off the 5% unemployment rates seen in 2008 it seems that Brits aren’t feeling the squeeze as much, and are willingly investing more of their income into foreign holidays.
The research suggests that an astonishing 41% of Brits now head off abroad at least once every 6 months. What is particularly notable about this finding is how starkly it contrasts to the figures from just a few years ago. Previously, during the dark days of the banking crisis, the average Brit only ventured abroad on average once every 18 months.
But is there any reason for this rapid change, besides a stronger financial footing?
The number one factor cited by respondents for taking more regular holidays was increased stress. Accounting for 28% of responses it seems that many people still view the classic package tour as an easy and cost-effective way to unwind from the pressures of everyday life.
The second most popular reason for more regular travel was better travel deals which are in turn making holidays more affordable. It is unclear whether the 24% of people really finding more competitive deals or whether their better financial situation is making travel merely seem cheaper.
The third most common reason for travel among the Brits surveyed was an increased desire to travel, followed closely by a higher disposable income helping to underline just how quickly and how noticeably the UK economic climate has recovered after the turmoil of just a few years ago.
Perhaps the most surprising reason of all for increased international travel was new couples jetting off to cement a fresh relationship and spend some quality time together.