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Brits book holidays at last minute

With the credit crunch, rising fuel prices and talk of recession, it appears that Brits are waiting until the last minute to book their summer holiday. says it has noticed a dramatic increase in week on week trading, with the number of people searching for holidays up 23% over the last seven days. The online retailer reports that visitors to its site are looking for departure dates within the next three weeks, making lead in times shorter than ever before.

The most popular destinations are mainly outside the Euro zone. Croatia is said to be up by 150%, and Tunisia by 95% compared to last year. Egypt and Turkey are also performing well, with bookings up by 14% year on year.

Sales are reported to be price driven and European destinations are only doing well when very good value for money packages are available. Currently 'flying off the shelves' are holidays to Austria (one week half board from £199), Italy (one week bed and breakfast from £299), and Switzerland (one week half board from £299).

“This summer our customers are going where their pound will take them further and where good bargains are to be had. We are seeing a strong interest in destinations outside the Euro, whether these are short or long haul. We are also noticing that Britons are trying to find ways to cut corners by spreading short breaks throughout the summer as well as throughout the year, but also by finding cheaper ways to have a good time at home or abroad,” comments MD, John Bevan. says that customers are also booking more attractions, theme parks, theatre and music tickets alongside hotels. Growth in bookings for such packages is up 18% compared to last year.

Traditional British seaside resorts are doing well too, with record numbers of bookings. Brighton is up by 70%, Eastbourne by 66% and Bournemouth by 20%.

Written by: Nick Purdom