After all the stories about the impact of the euro and how it was reducing the number of us holidaying in the euro countries comes the news that it looks as though visits to the Canaries have bounced back by a staggering amount. In Lanzarote, visits are up by a third over 2009 and holidays to Gran Canaria and Tenerife are up as well. Some are saying that numbers are nearly back to those pre-recession days. In July alone 450,554 of us just went to Tenerife
In Mexico, obviously a long haul destination, arrivals from the British rose by a fifth over 2009 compared to the first 6 months of last year. Admittedly in 2009, there was a swine flu scare in Mexico and it was during the recession but this is a pretty impressive fight back especially since there have been so many press stories about drug-related gang violence. However, the violence tends not to be where we go. Cancun is where nearly 75% of us travel to, thus sharing with the Canaries the same appeal, heat, and beaches. The Mexicans are keen to encourage us to other places such as the mountains, the areas with a colonial heritage and the rainforests. And with new British Airways flights there next year, it may come to pass.
Another South American country, Columbia has also seen the growth of a quarter over the last five years. As a relatively unknown holiday destination for us, maybe Brits as a whole are becoming more adventurous.
What it shows is what I suspect you’ve already guessed. The holiday is now considered essential and, out the recession, the need for a break remains important. What is a little surprising is how well places are bouncing back. It’s not only the Canaries, Turkey, and Mexico. Other long-haul destinations in the Far East are doing well. You might think that would mean that fewer of us would have holidayed at home. It doesn’t seem to be the case and maybe more of us took a break this year than usual just because we considered the recession was over.