“2024 will be the year of two peaks,” according to Dame Irene Hays, chair of Hays Travel.
The Hays Travel group will plan for a second peak next year to capitalise on an expected spike in late bookings and capacity in the market.
Speaking at the Hays Travel annual retail conference in Vilamoura, Portugal, Dame Irene said the agency has seen a “polarisation” in booking patterns with more sales coming early and late for 2024.
“We will not just have one peak in January-February,” she said.
“We can see that from forward bookings, sentiment and research that there is likely to be a secondary peak in the lates market.
“We have never seen such strong polarisation in the marketplace.
“We intend to invest in a second ‘peaks’ for lates.
“We have always sold lates before but the evidence is that we need to put not quite the same [marketing] as January-February but pretty close.”
She said the company has invested significantly in its turn-of-year marketing campaign as holidays are still among the top three desired purchases for consumers.
“They are spending more because they are prioritising travel over those other purchases; they are wanting to spend more to be with friends and family rather than buying stuff,” she added.