The survey of more than 5,000 consumers for the annual Holiday Confidence Index (HCI) produced by First Rate Exchange Services, found that the determination of the 54 per cent of Brits who will be taking a holiday is reflected in the fact that 44 per cent have already booked their first holiday and over 22 per cent have booked a second one. But fewer Brits – 47 per cent down from 53 per cent a year ago - will be taking an all-inclusive holiday as they did not consider it a good way to control costs.
Consumer confidence in personal finances has also fallen and a growing numbers of Britons plan to curb their costs by making cut-backs in the frequency with which they travel and the length of their stays. Three in ten holidaymakers say they will take shorter breaks of one to six nights, overtaking those who will take seven-night holidays (27 per cent) for the first time.
Almost two thirds (65 per cent) of holidaymakers will head to the Eurozone on their first trip abroad, despite continuing speculation about sterling and the strength of the euro, while demand for transatlantic trips has dropped significantly and the 'Trump Effect', which has included tighter entry restrictions into the USA, may help to account for this downturn.
Meanwhile, the threat of terrorist attacks in holiday resorts does not appear to be acting as a deterrent to travel, with two thirds of holidaymakers admitting to being concerned about terrorism but that this will not put them off travelling. Just one in five (21 per cent) changed their destination because of terrorism, a fall of 7 per cent since last year.
Where to go on holiday in Europe in 2018
Where to go on holiday in Europe in 2018
Despite the ongoing confusion around Brexit, British holidaymakers are still committed to Europe as a holiday destination, research from ABTA has found.
Almost two-thirds (63 per cent) of UK travellers are planning a trip to Europe in 2018 and it's the second most popular destination for a holiday after the UK (66 per cent).
Whether you're planning a city break, beach escape or active holiday in Europe in 2018, we've picked the most exciting places to visit, from Valletta to Vis...
Travellers who enjoy the beauty of Spain can explore one of its most unspoilt cities in 2018 when British Airways launches flights to Almeria in March. Situated in the southeast of Spain and perfectly positioned on the Mediterranean Sea, Almeria is famous for its Spaghetti Western film sets, untouched beaches, white-washed villages and medieval history. The Alcazaba of Almeria, Cabo de Gata-Nijar nature reserve and the Cathedral of Almeria are some of the must-dos. Book it: British Airways' return fares from Heathrow cost from £66.
A slightly poorer cousin of the glitzy Greek islands of Mykonos and Santorini, Corfu is set to receive a luxurious makeover in 2018 when two new glamorous hotels open. The first, Ikos Dassia, will open in May and offer dazzling views across the turquoise sea, sophisticated dining and elegant suites. New adults-only hotel MarBella Nido Suite Hotel & Villas opens its doors in May, bringing upscale romance, private villas and exceptional dining to the south-east corner of Corfu. Comedy series The Durrells will also return to screens for a third series, making the Mediterranean isle one of the hottest TV locations for a holiday in 2018. Book it: Sovereign offers seven-night all-inclusive holidays to Corfu, staying at the five-star Ikos Dassia, from £1,070 per person, including flights, transfers and airport lounge access.
Seville has been named the number one place to visit for a city break in 2018, by Lonely Planet's Best in Travel. Praised for being a city of bicycles and trams, its bars and restaurants that capture the latest food and fashion trends, and its passionate lifestyle, the Andalucian capital will host the 31st European Film Awards and "showcase its good looks" in TV fantasy drama Game of Thrones in 2018. Book it: Kirker Holidays offers a three-night break at former archbishop's palace Los Seises from £498 per person, including flights, accommodation and entrance tickets to the cathedral or the Alcazar.
All eyes will be on Russia in 2018 when the FIFA World Cup takes place, with host cities including Moscow, Saint Petersburg and Samara. Kaliningrad, another of the World Cup hosts, is a terrific option for an off-the-beaten-path city break and a terrific alternative to Moscow. This western enclave is separated from mother Russia by hundreds of miles of Lithuanian and Belarusian soil in a region that used to be known as Prussia. Tourism is slowly developing here as people come to see the fascinating place struggling to survive under capitalism. Book it: Regent Holidays offers three-night breaks in Kaliningrad from £485 per person, including flights and a stay at the Kaiserhof Hotel.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Malta’s capital city of Valletta is awash with history, culture and spectacular architecture. It is the European Capital of Culture 2018 and will officially launch on 20 January 2018, with the city's four main squares providing backdrops to acrobats, dancers and digital artistic projections, along with a series of cultural festivals and events throughout the year. Visitors to Valletta should check out sites including St John’s Co-Cathedral and Renzo Piano’s City Gate. Book it: Mercury Holidays offers three-night breaks to Valletta from £295 per person, including flights and a stay at the five-star Grand Hotel Excelsior.
2018 marks an important milestone in Lithuania’s history as the country celebrates the 100th anniversary of the restoration of the State. On the 16th of February 1918, the Council of Lithuania signed a document proclaiming the restoration of the independent state of Lithuania and with a number of events and festivities over the coming year, 2018 is the perfect time to visit its charming capital, Vilnius. Hilton Garden Inn and Hotel Pacai will be the newest hotels to open in the city. During your time in Vilnius, you won't want to miss walking the cobbled streets, exploring the Presidential Palace and Cathedral Basilica, or taking a hot air balloon ride over the picturesque Old Town. Book it: Rooms at Hotel Pacai will start from 160 euros (£143) per night.
Families who want to enjoy quality time together in picturesque surroundings should consider overlooked Slovenia for a fabulous camping trip in 2018. The kids can try paddle boarding on Lake Bled or explore the caves of Postojna, while the adults enjoy the thermal spas and world class cuisine in the capital Ljubljana. Slovenia is like Europe all rolled into one compact holiday and offers the perfect, crowd-free alternative with many activities to keep the whole family entertained. Book it:Pitchup.com offers stays at the luxury safari-style Herbal Glamping Resort in the mountains near Ljubno ob Savinji from £250 per night for four people.
One of the last undiscovered gems of Europe, Tirana is a captivating city offering a Mediterranean lifestyle and cultural treasures free from tourist crowds. The Albanian capital is home to two new museums: the House of Leaves, which was the base for the country's communist phone tapping network, and Bunk’Art which is located inside a huge bunker that dictator Hoxha built for himself and close friends. Aside from the museums, visitors can enjoy family-run restaurants, chic boutiques and Turkish bazaars on a fantastic city break with a difference. Book it: KE Adventure Travel offers an eight-day Balkans holiday from £1,395 including flights.
Over-tourism was a major topic of discussion in 2017 with anti-tourism protests and legislation for reducing tourist numbers hitting the headlines. One country that has been particularly affected is Croatia, particularly Dubrovnik thanks to the popularity of Game of Thrones. 2018 is the year to venture farther afield and summer sun-seekers will adore Primosten. The small town is located on the Dalmatia Coast and offers blissful beaches, pretty streets and lively nightlife. Book it: Time and Place offers stays at the stylish beachfront Villa Sirocco for up to eight people from £5,815 per week.
The largest of the Canary Islands and a classic winter sun destination for UK travellers, Tenerife will become even more accessible in 2018 when British Airways launches its first direct route from Heathrow for winter 2017/18. The island will also host the launch of the respected Michelin Guide to Spain and Portugal in November and for families visiting Tenerife, animal paradise Loro Parque was recently awarded the best zoological park in the world in TripAdvisor’s 2017 Travellers’ Choice Awards. Book it: British Airways' new flights from Heathrow to Tenerife start at £98 return.
Vibrant and forward-thinking, Copenhagen makes a fascinating city break destination thanks to its winning combination of eye-catching architecture, interesting museums and galleries and thriving gastronomy scene. In the beginning of 2018, world-renowned restaurant Noma will re-open in a new and unusual location with a brand new concept. The Danish capital will also get an artificial ski slope in 2018 named Copenhill, which is built on top of a green power plant. Opening in the heart of city in 2018 is the new boutique upscale five-star hotel Herman K, which will wow guests with its private rooftop terrace and 31 unique luxury rooms. Book it: Ryanair's new flights to Copenhagen from Liverpool and Edinburgh, which launched in late 2017, start from £9.99 one way.
If you've checked Amalfi, Tuscany and Rome off of Italian bucket list, 2018 is the year to discover one of the country's true hidden gems: Abruzzo. Boasting high mountain passes and deep gorges, as well as four National Parks, other highlights of the region include the village of Santo Stefano di Sessanio perched high in the mountains 1,250m above sea level and the iconic climb to Campo Imperatore in the heart of the Gran Sasso National Park. Abruzzo offers some of the best cycling Italy has to offer and is wonderful to see on two wheels as you take in the natural views. Book it: Saddle Skedaddle offers an eight-day guided road cycling holiday in June, July and August 2018 from £1,425 per person, excluding flights.
Summer 2018 will see holidaymakers lust over Vis, when the remote and sleepy Croatian island takes a starring role as Greece in new Mamma Mia sequel, Mamma Mia, Here We Go Again. The original cast, which includes Meryl Streep, Julie Walters and Colin Firth, will reunite to continue their story. Vis is reached by catamaran from Split in under 90 minutes and offers a small island community feel, pretty fishing villages, coastal caves and smooth pebble beaches. Book it: Prestige Holidays offers seven-night escapes to the island, staying at the ten-room Hotel San Giorgio, with flights, ferry and transfers included, from £769 per person.
2018 is an important year for Vienna as it celebrates the lives of four of its most important protagonists: painters Gustav Klimt and Egon Schiele, architect Otto Wagner and graphic artist Koloman Moser, who died 100 years ago. The creativity of these four men and many other protagonists of Modernism in Vienna around 1900 will be celebrated throughout the city in 2018. Some of the unmissable exhibitions will be held at Wien Museum, Leopold Museum and Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna. Book it: One Traveller offers a six-day Imperial Vienna holiday in April, September and October 2018, from £1,640 per person, including flights, accommodation, tours and some meals.