Brits book US holiday reacting to rumours of a USA-UK travel corridor

TD Editor

In a study of travel searches and bookings in the first half of April, ADARA finds that Brits are overwhelmingly looking to travel to the US over Europe – with almost one in five international bookings US-bound.

With the government confirming earlier this month that foreign travel will reopen under a traffic light system in the summer, ADARA has analysed searches and bookings to international locations. The study found that the most popular destination for UK travellers is the US (18% share of all bookings), followed by India (7% of all bookings) and Spain (6% share of all bookings). This is likely impacted by discussions of a UK / USA travel corridor in the media.

Top 10 destinations for UK travellers

USA – 18% of all bookings / 19% of all searches

India – 7% of all bookings / 3% of all searches

Spain –  6% of all bookings / 7% of all searches

Turkey – 4% of all bookings / 3% of all searches

Thailand – 4% of all bookings / 2% of all searches

Pakistan – 3% of all bookings / 3.5% of all searches

Australia – 3% of all bookings / 2% of all searches

Portugal – 3% of all bookings / 4% of all searches

United Arab Emirates – 3% of all bookings / 3% of all searches

Greece – 3% of all bookings / 3% of all searches

The journey is less common the other way, however. ADARA’s research also looked into top destinations for US travellers. It found that the three top holiday destinations for US holidaymakers are Mexico (22% of all bookings), Puerto Rico (8% of all bookings) and the Dominican Republic (5% of all bookings). The UK was the eighth-highest ranked country for US travellers, with bookings reaching a mere 2%.

Domestic travel

The research looked into the increase in domestic travel during the pandemic. With concerns around international travel still dominating headlines, ADARA has found that domestic searches and bookings represent 18.9% and 24% of the UK travel market, respectively.

Carolyn Corda, CMO of ADARA, said: “While the full details around the UK’s traffic light system remain under wraps, it is clear that consumers are searching for and booking holidays abroad. Our data shows that people are seeking out travel to countries with a successful vaccination programme such as the US or places with limited restrictions like the UAE.

“Consumers are listening closely to news updates and responding with both searches and bookings to any positive news. After a tough year, UK travellers are more than ready to get going on holiday – good news for the travel sector. With the rollout of the vaccine in North America, Europe and APAC in full swing, travel companies need to start to prepare for a big surge in bookings when the traffic light system begins in earnest. People are eager to travel and brands that tailor their messaging and targeting now to attract this first wave of holidaymakers will reap the rewards.”

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