Exclusive consumer research for Travel Weekly has confirmed the underlying strength of travel demand, with almost one in three UK adults (31%) intending to take an overseas holiday this year.

The research in November found 16% ‘very likely’ to book a holiday abroad, suggesting 8.5 million are eager to go. Adults aged 25-44 appear most likely to book, with 45% of parents with children intending to travel.

But confidence in the availability of a full refund, cited by 53% of prospective travellers, appears critical alongside flexible booking (47%).

A majority (72%) said they will book through intermediaries and one in five (20%) intend to use a high street agent, seven percentage points up on a year ago. Two in four (38%) expect to spend more on holidays in 2021 and half about the same as last time.

More than one in two (53%) expressed concern about Covid-19 in destinations, with levels of concern rising from 39% among 16-24-year-olds to 68% among over-65s.

Having to self-isolate while away concerned more prospective travellers (51%) than having to quarantine on return (44%), while two out of five (43%) expressed concern about flying.

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There was no significant change in the type of holidays consumers intend to take. All-inclusive demand remains extraordinarily strong – the choice of 52% of UK adults and 65% of parents with children under 16.

Two in five holidaymakers (42%) plan a beach holiday and one in five (19%) a city break, on a par with a year earlier. The research also found no significant change in intended duration, and no greater intention to book self-catering (13%).

Almost half (45%) of UK adults said they would take at least one domestic holiday – down 22 percentage points year on year, identical to the drop in the proportion intending to travel overseas.

The research was conducted among 1,279 adults in early November for the Travel Weekly Insight Report 2020-21.

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