Long-stay holidays are back in demand, but ‘suppliers need to get behind them’

By Linsey McNeill
Home » Long-stay holidays are back in demand, but ‘suppliers need to get behind them’

Demand for long-stay winter sun holidays is growing as Brits look to avoid high fuel bills at home.

Advantage says enquiries for both long-stay holidays and long-stay working trips have increased in recent weeks.

It says it expects bookings to further increase over the winter as people weigh up the higher cost of fuel to heat their homes against the cost of a holiday.

“Long-stay holidays were an aspiration a few weeks ago, but now they are happening, people are booking,” said Advantage Chief Commercial Officer Kelly Cookes.

In the past, she said, it was common for six to eight week holidays to be cheaper per day than staying at home, and rising UK fuel prices seem to have led to a resurgence in demand.

“Long-stay holidays always were popular with retired people, but now we are seeing demand from younger people as well because they can work from anywhere, so why not work from somewhere warm?” she added.

However, she said suppliers need to start promoting long-stay deals, such as three weeks for the price of two.

“In many cases agents have to call to request a long-stay booking, the offers aren’t in the system,” she said. “Agents are promoting long-stay holidays, but they need the support of the suppliers.”

Over 50s specialist Saga Holidays offers holidays of 28 days or more to a few countries, while Jet2holidays offers long-stay holidays for up to 55 nights in select destinations, including the Canary Islands, Portugal and Madeira. However, TUI offers only fixed 7, 10, 11 or 14 night holidays on its website.

Agents told Travel Gossip they had tried promoting long duration holidays, but more out of curiosity than expectation. One said they’d had a lot of interest in a Jet2holidays’ 55-night package to Portugal, which cost just £13.40 a day, while another said they had ‘ a few’ clients booking three-week cruises over winter.

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