Package holidays sustain growth impetus throughout season

The current popularity of package holidays has been sustained into the latter stages of the holiday season.

Suspicions that early season growth in the package holiday market would see a decline in favour of dynamic sales have proven to be unfounded, according to a report by GfK, an industry analyst. According to the company, despite the overall holiday market being down by two percent year-on-year to mid June, package holiday sales have enjoyed an increase of four percent for the same period. In GfK’s estimation, package holidays currently account for an 83 percent share of the total holiday market.

The package holiday market has rationalised a little since its early season highs however, when GfK were reporting February bookings for the segment that were eight percent up year-on year. The last week in May also proved to be a winner for package companies, with sales up by nine percent on last year, excluding figures from some of the major on-line travel agents.

GfK Retail’s consumer choices global client director, Sarah Sloman, said, ‘The market has been driven by packages at the expense of accommodation-only and flight-only.’

Regarding bookings to specific countries, the much-publicised civil unrest in Turkey has had an impact on the sale of holidays to the country, according to GfK, with bookings showing a five percent reduction in the week to June 15 compared to the same period last year.

In contrast, sales to Greece are six percent up for the season compared to last year, and the average selling price is GBP98 up on last year.