The majority of vaccinated over-50s are keen to travel as soon as Covid restrictions are relaxed, a new Aito poll reveals.

Almost half (46%) are still planning their trip and 94% aim to spend the same amount or more on a holiday –  over £2,000 per person for half of those surveyed.

Almost two-thirds (60%) of those asked are likely to book with a specialist operator – up from 38% in 2019 – and 64% are likely to rebook with the same company in the next 12 months.

Figures for booking directly with an airline are down from 62% to 39% in 2019.

Just 30% will be booking their accommodation directly, down from 39% in 2019, with most opting for the financial protection of an operator.

The over 50s have been largely unaffected by the financial issues of the pandemic.

As many as 83% are the same or better off financially and 77% are happy to pay more for a better experience.

Some 82% love planning a holiday and consider travel as part of their lifestyle.

More than 50 operator and travel agent members of Aito surveyed 28,500 customers, 87% aged 50 and over and who have either already been vaccinated or will be vaccinated by mid-June.

Executive director Martyn Sumners said: “There is a huge amount of optimism to be taken from the latest Aito insights survey.

“The typical Aito traveller is 50-plus and wants to travel as soon as they are able to do so; the current barriers are vaccinations – all being well, this group will all be vaccinated by mid-June – destination infection rates, and Covid insurance.

“They are not really affected financially by the pandemic and are traditionally higher spenders, prepared to pay more for a better experience.”

He added: “Now, more than ever, they are shunning the do-it-yourself holiday and, instead, they are booking a package with a specialist tour operator.

This not only offers them full financial protection, but opens up a world of rich and fascinating experiences, whether they are interested in art and culture, walking, historic attractions or nature.

“On sustainability, we found that most 50-plus travellers care about their carbon footprint, and will consider this when booking their trip.”