Brits turn to Eastern Europe for 2017 holiday plans

A growing number of British holidaymakers are looking to eastern European destinations for their holidays this year, according to new research from Travelzoo.

Citing the rising threat of terrorism in western countries and uncertainty over the value of the pound, the study suggests that locations such as Croatia and Bulgaria are seeing a surge in demand.

 Nearly half of those questioned said they had purposely avoided Western Europe as a result of safety concerns, while 17% revealed the weakness of the pound had swayed their decision making on where to visit next.

Such is the prevalence of Central and Eastern Europe in the eyes of travellers, that more people (12%) see the region as a more appealing destination than Spain (10%).

Croatia, Bulgaria and Poland were the most sought-after Eastern European destinations, although 45% of those questioned by Travelzoo said they would never have previously considered visiting these countries.

Meanwhile a rise in staycations is also likely, as a third of those polled are planning to visit the somewhere else in the UK, up 7% from 2016 levels.

Reasons for encouragement

Travelzoo’s UK Managing Director Joel Brandon-Bravo said it is “encouraging” to see so many Brits looking to Eastern Europe, adding that they won’t be disappointed.

He points to the picturesque coastlines of the Balkan Peninsula – Slovakia, Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina – adding that they are “just a stone’s throw” from Italy’s east coast.

“They boast the same warm weather and beautiful beaches, lakes and mountains, and present a wonderful opportunity for British people to explore new travel gems,” he added.

A major advantage for Croatia and Bulgaria is that they operate outside of the Euro, meaning British holidaymakers are able to enjoy better exchange rates and get more for their money.

The growing popularity of more affordable travel destinations is set to provide a major boost to the overall travel industry too.

If you’re considering a trip overseas in the coming year, be sure to organise your specialist travel insurance in advance.

Date Created: 13 January 2017

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