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East Anglia Future 50

Growing popularity of short-breaks

PUBLISHED: 18:21 21 February 2019

Spring day, in February, at Southwold. Great weather for the school half term holiday.
Picture: CHLOE BAKER

Spring day, in February, at Southwold. Great weather for the school half term holiday. Picture: CHLOE BAKER

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Suffolk holidays are in great demand and 2019 looks well on the way to becoming a record-breaker.

The beautiful beach at Aldeburgh is a great attraction for holidaymakers.
Picture: BEST OF SUFFOLKThe beautiful beach at Aldeburgh is a great attraction for holidaymakers. Picture: BEST OF SUFFOLK

Holiday cottage lettings companies are seeing record numbers of bookings - for full holidays and short breaks too.

Sally Owen, brand marketing manager for Suffolk Secrets and Suffolk Cottage Holidays said:“January has been a tremendously successful month for bookings, and February continues in the same way.

“Booking volumes for Suffolk Secrets and Suffolk Cottage Holidays are currently up over 12% compared with this time last year.

“Our February half term business is up a tremendous 33% year on year and we really notice the uplift in footfall and a shift in atmosphere with one of our offices being in the heart of Southwold and the other in Aldeburgh High Street.

Spring day, in February, at Southwold. Great weather for the school half term holiday.
Picture: CHLOE BAKERSpring day, in February, at Southwold. Great weather for the school half term holiday. Picture: CHLOE BAKER

“It’s been a really busy week and it’s lovely to see so many people enjoying our tourism hot spots.

“Families are an important audience for us and all of the key school holidays periods are filling up incredibly well. As well as the summer holidays already showing limited availability, Easter and the half term weeks are proving very popular indeed.

“The most significant shift in consumer behaviour is the growth in popularity of the short break. Holidaymakers choosing to stay less than seven nights are up a staggering 72% for our Suffolk brands.

“This is a national trend with our parent company Original Cottages, who have a national portfolio of over 4,000 holiday cottages also reporting similar growth (at 67%).

“There are a variety of reasons for this; people become increasingly time pressed but valuing their time more as a result, plus we’re also seeing growth from a new younger audience with fewer ties and greater disposable income who like to travel with friends and make the most of their weekends.”

Tim Ripman, for Best of Suffolk agency, said they had seen growing demand: “The year started strongly and January continued at a similar rate.

“Bookings were 20% up on bookings over January last year, and February has followed suit.

“So far we are 25% up on last year.

“It has been fabulous and it is all about continuing it now. This is good news for Suffolk plc and the holiday industry,

“The summer is looking good but we are getting bookings for all year round.”

Many landlords were more flexible and happy to accommodate short breaks as well as the traditional Saturday to Saturday or Friday to Friday holidays, he added.

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