Travel corridors to warmer climates may have opened to UK consumers in 2022, but that hasn’t stopped the staycation market in its continued growth. This blog looks at the consumer trends making the case for a booming UK attractions market.
Consumer confidence is rising following the Covid restrictions. While the cost of living issue continues to affect their day-to-day lives, it isn’t stopping them making big-spending decisions on their summer holidays.
UK booking site Holiday Cottages has seen a 100% increase in bookings compared to pre-Covid levels in 2019.
ITTA have reported foreign holidays increasing by an additional 16% this year due to pent-up demand and oil prices.
Package holiday company TUI announces ‘no last minute offers this summer’ as holidays are booked by Brits
Park Leisure research shows that 70% of UK consumers now prefer many small holidays in the UK, rather than one big foreign adventure.
Using a combination of reliable industry sources and our knowledge of the industry, we are predicting a strong long-term consumer interest and demand in the UK staycation market.
As TUI admits themselves, they have sold so many holidays that they can’t guarantee their traditional ‘last minute offers’ this summer. This will push UK consumers to seek alternative solutions – either by booking a holiday out of peak season, or, making the UK their ‘big holiday’ destination for 2022 and beyond.
As demand rises, so too are costs. With foreign holidays increasing by at least an additional 16%, amidst a cost of living crisis, we may see families having to resort to UK breaks as the cheaper alternative.
Some consumer groups have been surprised by the holidays they’ve experienced during the last two years in the UK, when they’ve typically gone abroad. This has helped to cement the UK for these groups as a viable destination to spend their holidays. Inspired by their previous holidays, they are in search of new experiences in new regions of the British Isles that they haven’t yet visited.
As well as UK consumers stating their preference for many smaller holidays in the UK, rather than one big holiday abroad, consumers are generally wanting more experiences. The rise of websites such as Buy-A-Gift is a typical example of consumers wanting to spend their money on doing something with others, rather than having an object/item bought for them.
Next steps for attractions
The market opportunity is ripe for UK-based attractions to invest to take advantage of the long-term trend of staycations. Here’s some steps you can take to plan for the future.
Add new rides and experiences
You can build momentum with the introduction of new rides and experiences, to generate new and repeat visits to your visitor attraction. Not only can they add enjoyment for families, they can help keep guests there a little longer – guaranteeing greater spend on food and beverage.
Increase your capacity
For attractions already at visitor capacity levels, now is the time to invest. Whether you can develop a new area of land, extend the day and season offering a little longer, or, begin to offer overnight stays – a focus on capacity can help plan for the mid to long-term future in developing your future attraction. Not to mention the additional revenue throughout the year.
New markets, different proposition
Exploring the make-up of your local staycation market is crucial. They may not be your ‘typical’ visitor, but if they are on your doorstep visiting, what are you going to do differently to attract them to your attraction? Evening events just for adults have become a phenomenon amongst leading UK museums, heritage and themed visitor attractions recently.
From strategy to implementation
Here at Katapult, our team is on hand to help you take advantage of the staycation market. Experienced in creating and developing themed attractions around the world, we can help you identify your market opportunity, design it and work with you to build it ready for opening.
For more insights, UK theme parks and visitor attractions can download our report Time To Grow today.