British consumers are less willing to travel than their European counterparts, according to research by the European Travel Commission, the association of national tourism boards.
The ETC said that Europeans are becoming “more confident and relaxed” about travel after confidence was restored over the summer.
However, just 57% of Brits said they were planning to travel during the next six months, compared to 66% on average across Europe.
A third of Brits planned to travel domestically, 41% said their plans were to travel to Europe, and 12% wanted to go beyond Europe.
The research was conducted among 5,769 consumers in the UK, Germany, France, Netherlands, Italy, Belgium, Switzerland, Spain, Poland and Austria. In the UK, 750 people were polled.
More than half (55%) of the respondents planning to travel in the next six months prefer to visit another European country, and air travel is on the rise, with more than 50% of respondents saying they feel comfortable taking a plane again.
Mediterranean destinations rank highest on travellers’ destination wish list, with Spain and Italy (both 9%), France (8%) and Greece (7%) as the top preferences.
Desire for city breaks (18%) has reached its highest rate so far this year, and trip planning is becoming more last-minute.
“Higher interest in city breaks and last-minute bookings is another indicator of the gradual return to normality and towards more spontaneous trips in the near future,” said the latest edition of the report, called Monitoring Sentiment for Domestic and Intra-European Travel.