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Overseas travel a top priority when vaccines arrrive

  • Surge in travel plans as 55% of Britons consider overseas holiday with news of a vaccine
  • Older travellers most enthusiastic about foreign travel in 2021
  • People in regions hardest hit by lockdown most in need of a holiday

Whilst the ending of lockdown re-opens the door to non-essential foreign travel, it is the news of a Covid vaccine that has triggered a large-scale revival of consumer confidence in travel – according to new research from AllClear Travel Insurance.

The AllClear poll asked a nationally representative sample of 2,000 adults which activities they would be most keen to book following the news of successful vaccination trials by companies such as AstraZeneca-Oxford.

Going on holiday abroad topped the wish list. Overall, 55% of survey respondents said a vaccine would make them feel comfortable going abroad on holiday again. Further, 42% of people said they would feel comfortable going to a hotel again – a shift back from the move towards villas and private accommodation that had been noted during the summer months.

The resurgence of interest in planning holidays was strongest amongst older people. 64% of over 55s were now focussed on booking a holiday, compared with 42% of under 35s.

While enthusiasm for foreign travel was consistently popular across all UK regions – suggesting the revival for the travel sector would be a truly nationwide phenomenon – those people living in regions most seriously affected by Covid (such as Wales, the North East and East Midlands) were also those most likely to prioritise a foreign holiday in 2021.

Other activities people said they would resume for 2021 following news of a Covid vaccine included: a return to cinemas (39%), going to concert halls (29%), attending live sport (24%), and getting tickets for music festivals (21%). Overall, 83% of adults said the vaccine would make them more comfortable re-engaging with one or more social and leisure activities in the New Year.

Percentage of people that would feel comfortable going on holiday in 2021 following news of a potential vaccine by age group

18-24 39%
25-34 44%
35-44 54%
45-54 56%
55-64 60%
Over 65 68%

Percentage of people that would feel comfortable going on holiday in 2021 following news of a potential vaccine by region

Wales 62%
North East 59%
North West 59%
East 58%
East Midlands 57%
Yorkshire / Humber 55%
South East 55%
South West 54%
Scotland 52%
London 51%
West Midlands 46%

Activities people are most keen to do/book once the vaccine is in place

Going on holiday 55%
Going to a hotel 42%
Going to the cinema 39%
Going to the theatre 31%
Going to concerts 29%
Going to art galleries/museums 29%
Going back to work 24%
Going to a sports match 24%
Going to the gym/sports centre 22%
Going to music festivals 21%

Chris Rolland, CEO of AllClear comments: “News of a vaccine has had an enormous impact on consumer confidence. This survey delivers welcome news for a travel sector that has been through an unprecedented year and gives us all the basis to plan with a bit more confidence for 2021. Whilst details of the rollout are still not clear, the vaccine news has transformed fear to hope and will encourage many people to bring forward people’s travel plans. At AllClear, we are committed to ensuring that people can travel safely and those with pre-existing medical conditions can enjoy the same freedom to travel – and to do so safely.”

The research forms part of a comprehensive new travel report from All Clear Insurance which will be published in the weeks ahead.

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