Directors at the Caravan and Motorhome Club told the BBC that, while the impact of the pandemic has been hard on the domestic travel industry, they are optimistic about the coming holiday season. Bosses at the holiday firm said that the lifting of restrictions would be like a “cork popping from a bottle”.
Several other holiday companies are expecting to see a flurry of people planning staycations. This would follow the trend seen in 2020 when visitor numbers increased significantly once the first lockdown restrictions eased.
However, before the new lockdown was introduced, VisitBritain was more reserved in its predictions. The tourist board was cautiously optimistic, forecasting a recovery to £61.7 billion in domestic tourism spending in 2021, up 79% compared to 2020 but still only 67% of the level of spending seen in 2019.
This divides up as a predicted £18 billion in domestic overnight tourism spending, which is a significant 82% growth on 2020, and £44.6 billion in leisure day trip spending, which is an 82% growth on 2020.
While these numbers are encouraging, these predictions were made in December, before the new restrictions were enforced. The tourist board states that it’s a short-term forecast and that it can change.
A boost in holiday planning
While VisitBritain may change its forecast to reflect the recent lockdown, there is still hope among tourist operators in the UK. One area that could see a boost is motorhome-based holidays.
Last year, outside of the national restrictions, caravan and motorhome sales soared, with dealers across the UK seeing a boost. Chesterfield-based Robinsons Caravans saw sales shoot up by 14% in July 2020, while Salop Leisure in mid-Wales saw similar success and expects more to come in 2021.
Having spent so long at home, holidaymakers were ready to go on an adventure, and motorhomes are an easy way to see all the UK has to offer. When restrictions lift later this year, it’s likely that more people will invest in their own motorhome and hit the road.
Motorhome insurance specialists, Comfort Insurance, researched some of the most popular destinations for a staycation in 2020, and there were some truly captivating locations to head to. Topping the list was the arty, surfer’s paradise of St Ives in Cornwall. This was closely followed by the Norfolk Broads, while the quirky hilltop city of Lancaster.
Will these destinations still be in the top three in 2021? Wil there be a boost in motorhome owners heading around the UK this year?
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