Surge in holiday sales set to continue into Blue Monday, Advantage predicts

Holiday sales are likely to remain high on forthcoming Blue Monday – coined as the most depressing day of the year – after a surge in turn of year bookings.

The prediction for the third Monday in January came from the Advantage Travel Partnership which reported a 75% rise in sales since the start of the year over the same period in 2022.

Sales spiked on Sunshine Saturday by 177% compared with the equivalent second Saturday of the month last year.

Almost a third of holidays booked last Saturday were for departures in the next 12 weeks with the top selling destinations being Spain, Greece, Turkey and the US.

Last week saw trading up 87% week-on-week with May being was the top selling month.

The consortium is seeing shoulder seasons selling well and strong bookings for family holidays.

Advantage predicts that sales are “very likely” to remain high into Blue Monday.

Chef executive Julia Lo Bue-Said said: “The figures so far this year are really encouraging and especially so on Sunshine Saturday. 

“Despite the difficult economic climate, people are clearly reluctant to give up their holidays and are making the most of the great deals that are on offer.

“For those looking to book a getaway to beat Blue Monday there continues to be some amazing deals still to be had with Bulgaria and Estonia great examples for those looking for wonderful beaches at a lower price point. 

“Sicily and Sardinia are also great value destinations for 2023 due to the increase in flights operating from the UK and Malta is among the best-value destinations for some winter sun.”

She added: “For those looking to book a getaway without stretching their budget it’s worth trying something new when looking for a destination, many of the traditional holidays come with higher price tags as they are in high demand. 

“There are bargains to be had by branching out, especially if a tour operator has just added a new destination to their programme and are encouraging people to travel there.

“There are also great deals to be had if holidaymakers are willing to be flexible on dates, location and airport. For example, there are cheaper flights to Turkey if you fly into Dalaman where you can easily visit the resort of Marmaris. Being creative with where you stay can also be cost effective like choosing smaller family run accommodation over hotels.

“Our Sunshine Saturday figures show that people are already thinking about saving on their trips by travelling in the shoulder season and if it’s possible to do so, avoiding peak times really does help save on costs. It can mean cheaper flights, cheaper hotels and the opportunity of visiting major sights without the crowds.”

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