The British summer holiday: is it better to stay at home or go overseas?

Summer is traditionally the time for the great British exodus overseas. Before the economic recession of 2008, most families considered a holiday abroad a necessity but as lack of money and high unemployment have dominated the last five years, the word ‘staycation’ has entered the national vocabulary.

Holiday patterns have changed

With more people working in part time and temporary roles, the idea of a long holiday in a beautiful sunny clime is less seductive if you might lose a work opportunity in your absence.

The UK has never seemed more appealing as a holiday destination and this applies to people of all ages, not just the working population. Even older residents of McCarthy & Stone retirement properties might decide to spend their time exploring the delights of the British countryside rather than spend money and precious time on a long international holiday.

Short breaks are more popular

Fewer people are spending their holiday budget on one big annual break. Figures released by the Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA) show that in 2013 the average Brit took 3.1% holidays a year and of that figure 1.9% were spent in the UK, compared with 1.2% overseas.

According to Visit England, “Leisure time has become more important as an antidote to the stresses and strains of every day life, meaning that consumers attempt to have breaks and holidays even while cutting back on other areas of spending, and also feel the need to do this more frequently than in the past.”

There’s plenty to do in the UK during the summer

You won’t be spoiled for choice if you do decide to take a break in the UK. Most major cities host festivals right through the summer months. From Bristol’s Festival of Ideas in May, to the wonderful triumphs of the annual late summer Edinburgh festival, you can feed your mind as well as enjoy new shows, films and comedy.

We all know that there’s more to a holiday than sitting on a beach, but if the seaside is your destination of choice then you’ll love the fact that three of the UK’s beaches feature on Trip Advisor’s 2014 World’s Top 10 Best Beaches list. Rhossili Bay in Wales compares favourably with resorts in Hawaii and the Seychelles, for example.

Avoid the hassle; take a staycation

Airport queues, flight delays, vaccinations and other irritants can all destroy a long-anticipated summer holiday. Of course, overseas holidays can be fun and very often guarantee fine weather and wonderful experiences, but all too often the journey to and from your country of choice might prove a nightmare.

Why not spend your funds wisely and enjoy the countryside and towns of the UK instead? You can always go abroad next year…

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