Britons still uneasy about travelling abroad, survey finds

Barely one in 10 UK adults would ‘feel comfortable’ booking an overseas holiday to depart in the next two months and the industry may have to wait up to a year before as many consumers feel sure about travelling as don’t.

That is according to a study of 1,600 UK adults by YouGov. It found 84% would not feel comfortable booking a holiday less than one month in advance and only 10% would.

The proportion ‘comfortable’ booking further in advance was barely higher at 11% for one to two months and 13% at three to four. More than two-thirds of respondents (69%) remained uncomfortable with booking five to six months out and only 17% were happy to book.

MoreComment: Covid puts Brits off booking in advance

Only at six-to-nine months in advance did YouGov record a significant rise in the proportion ‘comfortable’ to book to 26%, compared with 57% who remained uncomfortable – and only at nine months to a year did the proportion of respondents comfortable (41%) match those not (40%).

YouGov UK head of data products Amelia Brophy told Travel Weekly: “People are still reluctant to book trips abroad [and] last-minute quarantine policies and sudden spikes in cases in some countries are likely to have increased this sentiment.

“People slowly become more comfortable as the departure date extends into the future. [But] over half of Brits still find booking a holiday half a year to nine months in advance too precarious.”

The survey found 50% would be uncomfortable visiting a hotel and 45% uncomfortable visiting a restaurant abroad. However, 50% would be comfortable on a foreign beach.

Brophy said: “Many people simply feel nervous about going to a hotel or restaurant abroad.”

YouGov polled 1,652 UK adults on August 18-19. A separate YouGov poll on September 7-8 found almost half the 1,680 UK respondents (47%) thought the government should “quarantine all passengers on all flights into Britain”.

MoreComment: Covid puts Brits off booking in advance

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