British families opting for safe holiday destinations
The number one priority for British Holiday makers this year is finding a safe destination when looking for somewhere to take their annual vacation. Global insecurity is on the rise and this has led to an increase in booking to record levels for what are seen as places that are safe, resulting in the western Mediterranean being the most popular choice.
In January this year Abta has recorded an increase in summer holiday bookings to Spain up by 27% compared to last year, Portugal has seen a bigger increase of 32% this year and both Malta at 15% and Cyprus at 14% were up on January of last year. The strength of the pound against the Euro is another major factor, but this has not helped Greece.
Spain still remains the favourite holiday spot for British families and in 2014 the country attracted 12.2 million visitors an increase of 5.5% over 2013. The Balearics is still the place that most Britons choose with the islands of Ibiza and Majorca reporting hotels being very heavily booked for the popular months of July and August.
There is one thing that does concern the authorities and that is tourists who fail to take out adequate insurance cover, many not having any at all. This has led to a spokesman for the British Embassy in Madrid commenting on the matter. Many people believe that because these countries are in the EU, reciprocal arrangements are in place, but although the EHI card will cover basic treatment, holidaymakers should not expect to get the same high level of treatment as they would under the NHS in this country. So the message from the Embassy is: “Our biggest concern is those tourists who fail to take out travel insurance. One accident and you or your family can face huge medical bills. Our message is: don’t skimp, get insured.”