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Bad weather drives Brits abroad

British tour operators and holiday companies have reported a rise in the number of bookings, as the bad weather prompts people to go in search of sun.

While there was a surprisingly sunny spell in March, the weather quickly turned back to what we expect in Britain at this time of year soon afterwards. The bad weather shows no sign of letting up, as this month is expected to be one of the coldest Aprils since records began.

This has driven many people to promptly book holidays abroad to escape the heavy rain and cold temperatures, with a number of companies experiencing an unexpected boost to bookings. Virgin Atlantic has reported that bookings have gone up by 37% compared to last year, with destinations in the Caribbean proving particularly popular. “Britain's bad weather has created a flood of passengers eager to fly to sun-soaked destinations such as Barbados, St Lucia and Antigua,” said Greg Dawson, a Virgin Atlantic spokesman.

The trend is set to continue into the summer, with events like the Queen’s Jubilee and the Olympics driving Brits out of the country. Holiday company lowcostholidays.com has also seen a boost in bookings, with holidays to Majorca up by 60% over the Jubilee weekend.

The desire to escape the bad weather started at Easter, when the sunny period gave way to chilly weather and plenty of rain. “As the rain continued to wash out Bank Holiday Monday plans, we helped over 10,000 visitors – a 120% increase on a typical day – to find their next holiday,” said Will Goodridge, founder of holiday company I Spy Camping.

“We can easily assume that the persistent bad weather over much of the UK for the Easter weekend, meant families, who had not gone away for Easter, found the time and the inclination to seek solace in researching their summer holidays.” If you are planning on seeking out some sun this summer, remember to take out travel insurance before you go, in order to protect yourself while you’re away.

Date Created: 30 April 2012

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