Holidaybreak chief plays down impact of credit crunch

Holidaybreak group chief executive Carl Michel has played down the impact of the credit crunch on the travel industry.

Speaking at an breakfast briefing, he said the current doom and gloom about the economy was serving to separate the better players from the less successful.

He added: “There is a serious risk of us talking ourselves into something we have not got. At the moment it’s a spending showdown, rather than a recession.”

In the short-term, he does not anticipate the credit crunch to hit sales as most holidaymakers have already decided whether to take a holiday or were prepared to make other sacrifices. “If it lasts two or three years it could be a bit different,” he admitted.

He said Holidaybreak was “skewed towards a better market” because of the type of products it offers, which are less mainstream, and therefore better protected from credit crunch fears.

The silver lining for the industry was that the housing market was grounding to a halt because when people buy new houses they tend not to go on holiday.

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