The Advantage Travel Partnership Sees Soar in Holiday Bookings Ahead of Sunshine Saturday

The Advantage Travel Partnership is expecting to see Brits booking holidays in their thousands this Sunshine Saturday as they look to pick up the best deals. Sunshine Saturday marks the first weekend of the new year and is traditionally the most popular day of the year to book a getaway. Ahead of the weekend, Advantage is reporting that holiday sales in 2024 have started strong with bookings over the past week (26th December – 2nd January) up 5 percent and revenue up 37 percent compared to the same week in 2022-2023.

Of those bookings, summer 2024 took a 43 percent share, followed by the winter months of January and February 2024 with a 38 percent share. The Canary Islands once again took the top spot as the most popular destination for British travellers with a 13 percent share of total bookings throughout the year, of which Tenerife was the top selling Canary Island with a 33 percent share, closely followed by Lanzarote with 26 percent. Tenerife accounted for a 5 percent share of all bookings in total. Mainland Spain was the 2nd most popular destination with a 7 percent share of bookings as Brits seek to escape the rain in search of sunshine.

Travelling to warmer climates is set to be a priority for many when booking as looking at summer 2024 departures in isolation, Greece was the most popular destination with a 15 percent share of bookings followed by the Canary Islands & Balearics with an 8 percent share each.

Long haul continues its return to the travel agenda by accounting for a 24 percent share of all bookings with the most popular destinations booked being the USA, in particular New York and Orlando. City breaks remain ever popular and took a 12 percent share of volume last week, with the most popular cities being Paris, Reykjavik & Rome. Almost half of the city break bookings are for the early winter months of 2024. Cruise accounted for 8 percent of total sales, 52 percent of which were for summer 2024 sailings.

The average length of stay is 9.5 nights and all-inclusive continues to remain the most popular board basis with a 42 percent overall share of all departure seasons and 49 percent of summer 2024 departures while travellers look to lock in the price of their holiday early on before any rises. Meanwhile, demand for late bookings is still strong with 28 percent bookings departing within 12 weeks.

Julia Lo Bue-Said, CEO of The Advantage Travel Partnership said: “With demand for travel showing no signs of slowing down this year, we are anticipating an incredibly busy Sunshine Saturday for travel agents whether it’s online, on the phone, or on the local high streets. Despite the continued cost-of-living crisis, we are still seeing that holidays remain a priority for many and given the current poor weather across the UK, we are seeing Brits booking much needed getaways and giving themselves something to look forward to. It is no surprise to see Tenerife and the Canary Islands proving popular with plenty of sunshine and weather currently in the mid-20s.

There are great value offers available at this time of year across the vast product range bookable through travel agents, with something for travellers of all ages and budgets including during the school holidays. Having faced countless challenges over the past few years, the travel industry continues to thrive and it is set to be another successful year for our travel agency partners.

For those looking to book a holiday this weekend, we recommend contacting your local travel agent who will be able to use their expert knowledge and experience to help book the perfect holiday for you. Travel agents are able to accommodate for the needs, desires, concerns and budgets of all travellers as well as navigating any travel complexities.”


Advantage’s money saving tips for the year ahead:

Book early – the benefits of booking in advance are that consumers can benefit from the early booking discounts and free child places that are on offer.  As well as having more holiday options available from duration, airport and hotels – booking early also helps consumers budget for their holiday as they know how much it will cost and can stagger payments.  

Be flexible – if consumers can be flexible on the dates, location and airport they travel it makes it easier to find the best deals.    

Try something new – many of the traditional holiday destinations come with higher price tags as there is more demand for these trips.  Consumers can find some great holiday bargains if they try something new, particularly if an operator has just added a new destination to their programme and are trying to encourage more people to book.   

Pre-book extras – holiday extras such as airport parking and upgraded seats are best to book early to ensure that consumers get exactly what they want to complement their trip.

Avoid peak times if you can – for families, teachers and anyone else tied to school holidays this won’t be possible, but if you can travel outside of the peak periods then you will be able to save money on your holiday as there are some great deals available outside of peak times.

Book with a travel agent – with an incredible amount of travel knowledge and experience in searching for the best deals available, contact your local travel agent as they can help you find the best deal and take advantage of any offers and discounts available.

Advantage travel agency partners are currently offering a variety of great value package deals, including:

Option One – Malta

£3072 for a 7 night stay for 2 adults and 2 children in Mellieha, Malta. Accommodation at Pergola Hotel and Spa on a half-board basis. Departing 27th July with return flights from London Gatwick.

£2149 for a 7 night stay for 2 adults and 2 children in Bugibba, Malta. Accommodation at Sunseeker Holiday Complex in a 2-bedroom self-catering apartment. Departing 27th July with return flights from London Gatwick.


Option Two – Halkidiki

£2689 for a 7 night stay for 2 adults and 2 children in Halkidiki, Greece. Accommodation at Medusa Hotel in a 1-bedroom self-catering apartment. Departing 10th August with return flights from London Gatwick.


Option Three – Majorca

£1981 for a 7 night stay for 2 adults and 2 children in Alcudia, Majorca. Accommodation at Bellevue Complex in a 1-bedroom self-catering apartment. Upgrade to a half-board basis for £2275. Departing 24th August with return flights from London Gatwick.


Option Four – Tenerife

£1657 for a 7 night stay for 2 adults and 2 children in Puerto de Santiago, Tenerife. Accommodation at Tamaimo Complex in a 1-bedroom self-catering apartment. Departing 14th June with return flights from London Gatwick.


Option Five – Turkey 

£1997 for a 7 night stay for 2 adults and 2 children in Marmaris, Turkey. Accommodation at Suneo Costa Mar Suites on an all-inclusive basis. Departing 11th May with return flights from London Gatwick.

£1414 for a 7 night stay for 2 adults and 2 children in Icmeler, Turkey. Accommodation at Babadan Apartments in a 1-bedroom self-catering apartment. Departing 11th May with return flights from London Gatwick.

All of the above packages also qualify for a £100 sale booking discount which is additional to the above pricing.

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