The FINANCIAL — British people are travelling to 37% more countries on average than compared to 2013, according to a survey commissioned by London City Airport.
Evidence of the increasing travel bug has been revealed following a YouGov survey of over 2,200 Brits, with the average number of countries visited by a UK adult – across the full range of age groups – now 9.58. It represents a significant increase from the figure of 7 countries generated from the same question posed to 2,000 people in 2013, as part of a OnePoll survey commissioned by the airport.
The island nation clearly still has an appetite for adventures overseas, with Brits almost twice as likely to visit a new country on holiday (60%) than return to a favourite place (33%), and 94% have been abroad at least once in their life.
The research coincides with the launch of the airport’s new website and a new ‘It’s About Time’ digital and print advertising campaign, which communicates the advantages of using London City Airport through eyes of the customer. Recently published Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) statistics found that London City Airport was the most punctual airport last year – with the fewest delays of any of the U.K.’s 25 main airports.
Robert Sinclair, CEO of London City Airport, said:
“UK travel habits continue to evolve with more trips being made by Brits seeking out new experiences. The rise of social media is partly responsible for that, with greater exposure to the possibilities abroad, and also the ease and relative affordability of short breaks.
“From London City Airport, the only airport actually in London, we’ve responded to the increasing popularity of city trips with recent routes to Prague, Lisbon, Porto, and Reykjavik added to the route map for the first time. If you haven’t tried London City before, it’s about time you did!”
The Mediterranean favourites of France, Spain and Italy make up the top 3 choices for destinations. Italy has crept up the rankings from the 6th most visited country in 2013, while Greece has slipped from 5th to 9th place.
The top 10 most visited countries by Brits are:
France (visited by 76% of Brits surveyed)
The Netherlands (40%)
The ubiquity of mobile devices and social media means that travellers are also relying more and more on being connected when on holiday. 44% of Brits say they would not feel comfortable being on holiday abroad for more than a week without Wi-Fi access.
Close to one third of Brits (30%) who have been abroad have “checked in” or “tagged” themselves whilst on holiday. One quarter of adults who have travelled abroad and have “checked in” whilst on holiday before, say they do so at the point of departure or arrival (such as an airport) and one third would “check in” when visiting an attraction (such as a country landmark) on social media. When asked what motivates those who “check in”, almost 1 in 4 (24%) admits it’s to impress their friends back home.
Trips abroad are not solely about bragging rights however, with 1 in 4 Brits who have travelled abroad choosing a holiday destination to visit family or friends, and 60% to visit a new country, proving that not everyone is a creature of habit.
Using a holiday to mark a special occasion is still very popular, with 57% who have been abroad enjoying a celebration abroad, with a birthday being the most popular occasion people have celebrated abroad (27%).