- Almost two-thirds of us will take a UK holiday this year: nearly half in the South-West
- Cornwall is the star attraction, tying with Scotland for most popular destination
- Countryside breaks have the greatest appeal – eclipsing beach holidays
- But over 300,000 people risk heavy losses through failing to take out travel insurance
- Survey reveals hundreds of pounds lost on holiday curtailment and cancellation
A new poll has confirmed that Cornwall is set to cash in on the ‘Poldark effect’ as holidaymakers flock to the county this summer after seeing the TV series. According to research for the Post Office Travel Insurance Domestic Holidays Report, almost two-thirds of people – around 31.8 million UK adults¹ – have decided to take a holiday in the UK during 2015. And, while nearly half (48 per cent) will head to England’s South-West corner, Cornwall is the region’s star attraction².
The Cornish peninsula tied with Scotland as this year’s two most sought-after destinations with 17 per cent of survey respondents planning visits to each destination. Wales was third most popular (16 per cent) but Cornwall’s near neighbour and close competitor Devon was some way behind in fourth place. 12 per cent said they were planning trips there, suggesting that the impact of the Poldark TV series has worked to Cornwall’s advantage in the race to attract tourists.
Cornwall, Devon and Dorset (9 per cent) all look to be more popular than other destinations in England’s south. Only five per cent of survey respondents named the Isle of Wight and Hampshire as their 2015 holiday destination while the same percentage said they are planning trips to Sussex or Brighton. By comparison, more people intend to visit the Lake District (12 per cent), Yorkshire (11 per cent) and the Peak District (6 per cent).
The explanation for this may lie in a clear preference for countryside breaks. These are the type of holiday planned by over three-in-ten (31 per cent)3, easily eclipsing beach holidays (22 per cent). When combined with walking/hiking holidays and camping, each named by 12 per cent of UK holidaymakers as the type of holiday they are planning, this suggests that significant numbers – 55 per cent when these three holiday preferences are added together – prefer ‘fresh air’ trips.
Most UK holidaymakers will be travelling as a family (44 per cent) or with a partner (43%) and the vast majority (78 per cent) will use their car as transport. Only nine per cent will travel by coach and eight per cent by plane.
Despite the significant numbers of people planning UK holidays or short breaks, few bother to take out travel insurance. 64 per cent failed to do so for their last UK holiday4. The Post Office Travel Insurance research found that it was not on the agenda for eight-in-ten of those surveyed - with 53 per cent believing it unimportant and 27 per cent having forgotten to do so. Only five per cent said it was because they believed their household insurance would cover them.
However, based on the numbers of survey respondents who admitted experiencing travel insurance-related problems but were not insured5, Post Office Travel Insurance estimates that over 300,000 people could put themselves at risk of financial loss when they holiday in the UK this year.
When asked how much they had to pay to sort out problems that could have been dealt with by travel insurance, respondents said the biggest cost – an average of £1,225 - came as a result of having to cut short holidays due to injury6. Personal liability for injury to a third party cost uninsured respondents an average of £1,116 while curtailing holidays because of a problem at home cost £840. Cancellation on health grounds (£687), theft of a credit card (£794) and holiday delays causing loss of moneys paid for lost accommodation (£631) were other ‘big ticket’ items.
Nick Kennett, Post Office Director of Financial Services, said: “It looks as though huge numbers of holidaymakers will be enjoying the British countryside and its beaches on summer holidays this year. Yet far too many people will put themselves at risk of financial loss by failing to take out travel insurance because they don’t think about protection for a UK holiday.
“Holiday curtailment, cancellation and delays are among the biggest financial pitfalls, according to our research. As these are covered in our travel insurance, it makes good financial sense to secure peace of mind by taking out a reliable and comprehensive policy for a UK trip in the same way that you would do for a holiday further afield.”
Post Office Travel Insurance has been voted top travel insurance provider in the annual British Travel Awards for the past eight years. More information about the comprehensive cover it provides can be found at postoffice.co.uk/travelinsurance or at a Post Office branch.
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