2019 Set To Be The Year Of The Touring Holiday
Book now before sites start to sell out
Monday, 11, Mar 2019 01:02
By William Coleman
There is no real doubt that the touring holiday is going through a new golden age. Since the rise of the caravan holiday in the 1950s the industry has changed dramatically, and it's these changes that are bringing more people to the industry for both business and pleasure. Is 2019 going to be a stand out year for the caravan and motorhome holiday?
Since covering news in the industry I have noticed some significant changes, the main one being how sites, parks, clubs and other holiday companies are adapting the the rise is people opting to stay home for their holidays.
A lot of sites that I have visited have added renting options for caravans, statics, pods, yurts and all manner of "glamping" accommodation to their portfolio to help keep up with the way the UK holidays are trending.
Adding rental options is a great way to get more people involved in the "caravan" world who may not have the funds to purchase a van, thus improving the holiday, and overall, economy of the UK. Something we need in this uncertain time.
The Caravan and Motorhome Club have very much taken the new trends on board and feel that this year will be the 'Year of the UK Touring Holiday'. As we are now very much in the new season the Club has seen some amazing booking numbers already.
According to their booking numbers they have had the most successful start to the year ever with bookings to UK sites up by 16% and summer bookings up by 17%.
They seem to be one of many holiday companies that have seen customers booking well in advance of the new season as well very strong 'off season' bookings. Winter touring in 2018/19 was a game changer for a lot of smaller companies during this typically quiet time.
There is a long list of things that have lead to the Club's early 2019 success, from hundreds of sites all across the UK set on stunning scenery to every type of holiday accommodation available throughout their network.
A lot of their new Experience Freedom holidays are open to everyone, no membership required to experience your own taste of freedom courtesy of the Club without the price of a membership.
Early forecasts for 2019 seemed to have been blown out the water due to, as mentioned above, the new love for winter getaways. With vans being so well equipped for the harsh weather there really is no reason to not use them all year round, you have to get your monies worth after all.
Winter touring has become so popular that a lot of sites have now extended their operating times and some have even opted to stay open 365 days a year. Due to this bookings for January and February were well beyond expectation.
Sales figures also reflect the increase in the popularity of the touring holiday, Volkswagen's Hannover factory produced its 100,000th iconic California campervan last May following a 50% increase in sales in 2017 and manufacturers at the February 2019 Caravan, Camping and Motorhome Show reported buoyant sales figures.
A recent report also concluded health and wellbeing had improved for visitors who reported doing more exercise and feeling more relaxed while on a holiday park or campsite.
Club members are an active bunch; they like to take part in activities when away from home and cycling, walking and surfing are their most popular pastimes. The Club is very well placed to cater for this need for action and offers thousands of sites to choose from - both in the UK and Europe - that are perfectly situated near to beaches, country walks or great cycling routes.
The same report also confirms that holiday parks and campsites around the UK generate £9.3bn in visitor expenditure and support 171,448 full-time employees - so not only are touring holidays great for mind, body and soul, but they're great for the UK economy too!
Harvey Alexander, Caravan and Motorhome Club Director of Marketing said, "We're seeing big percentage increases in booking figures. Leisure vehicle holidays can give you the perfect day - waking up with no alarm in a room with a view of the sea, mountains, forests; hearing nature and being right in the middle of it, easy access to beautiful walks and beaches and quaint historic towns, then a safe haven to go back to at the end of the day to enjoy a barbecue - what's not to love?! It's no surprise 2019 certainly looks set to be the Year of the UK Touring Holiday."
As well as the Club seeing great early success we have seen the openings of several new dealerships across the whole of the UK. If parks are being filled with bookings then more campers, motorhomes and caravans must be being sold.
So if the cold does not bother people then the warmer weather will certainly attract the masses. Last year saw an exceptionally long summer with some of the hottest days on record. With the warm weather comes a sense of needing to be outdoors more.
Early word from the weather experts indicates that we may have another record breaking summer that will be both very warm and a lot longer. So with this in mind I can see a lot more people flocking so sites, vans, statics, tents and any other form of outdoor accommodation.