More Britons opting for package tours

The popularity of package tours is increasing as cost-conscious consumers guard themselves against hidden costs.

Tour operators say that Britons have become cost-conscious because of the financial crisis and are having to find more innovative ways to holiday in style.

Thomson Holidays said that the demand for package tours has increased. The company, considered to be the biggest tour operator in Europe, said that most of its holidays have been booked, and that compared to the same time last year, fewer seats remain to be booked. Package holidays are in high demand as budget-conscious holiday goers consider them to be more secure, thanks to their fixed prices and no hidden charges. With the increase in demand, it is expected that overall summer bookings for the UK will continue to outperform the wider industry.

Another factor in the healthy holiday uptake is that British tourists are keen to take advantage of the strength of the pound against the euro, as the currency differential currently makes visits to other parts of Europe even more inviting. The weather in Britain has also contributed to the increase in outbound tourism, with Brits determined to find dry, sunny weather before the holiday period draws to a close.

Peter Long, chief executive of TUI Travel Plc, said, ‘Northern Europe has been pretty consistently bad from a weather perspective over the last couple of months and that has benefited us with people deciding to book.’

Some of the most popular destinations currently attracting tourists are Majorca, Ibiza and Menorca. Turkey, Egypt, Tunisia and Morocco are also well favoured by those looking to holiday on more distant shores.

Tour operators are also advising that those looking to control costs abroad should take a prepaid credit card for more predictable expenditure.