As the Holiday Season Kicks Off In Europe, Many People Are Staying Closer To Home This Year.
With lockdowns lifting and borders opening, millions of Europeans are heading off for a summer holiday – even if their plans are rather different to previous years.
This year, more holidaymakers are opting for staycations as ongoing coronavirus concerns lead many to drive or take the train to their destination rather than fly.
In the UK, when holidaying at home restrictions were lifted in June, one staycation was booked every 11 seconds. In Germany, the country’s Baltic coast is enjoying renewed popularity among families who may have previously headed further afield. Only 15 percent of German hotels remain closed, according to data provider STR.
“There’s definitely a big effort from holidaymakers and the industry to salvage the summer,” says Jessica Jahns, head of EMEA Hotels & Hospitality Research at JLL. “Rather than stay home, we’re seeing domestic travel increase and UK travelers, for example, swap Tuscany for Tynemouth.” Resorts in fashion
Across Europe, resorts have been quicker to restart than cities. Spain’s pilot program- me in June saw some 10,900 German tourists arrive in Palma de Mallorca, Ibiza and Menorca, leading Spanish resorts to record higher occupancy than hotels in Barcelona and Madrid, according to STR. London, in contrast has fallen from the top to the bottom of the 10 most-booked European destinations, according to the World Travel & Tourism Council.
Plus, in many cities, the cultural attractions and nightlife that are usually a big draw are significantly reduced if they’re open at all.
“There’s also a strong correlation between the wider recovery of European cities and the reality of what life is like right now,” says Jahns. “Some museums and theatres are still closed while restaurants and bars are still coming to grips with social distancing.” Yet equally there are benefits to visiting quieter cities; this summer, queueing times at Rome’s reopened Colosseum and the Uffizi gallery in Florence are drastically reduced.