LONDON, England – UK holidaymakers aged 25 and older are expected to spend £27 billion+ on hotel stays this summer, whether it be for UK destinations, short or long haul travel. The average traveller is planning to book an average of ten room nights during the main summer holiday period according to a new survey released today by Room Key, hotel search engine built by hoteliers.
Though nearly three-quarters (74%) said price will drive their hotel decision, location was a close second at 66%, and over half of travellers (52%) said that facilities will play a significant role in their decision. Hotel brands (24%) and the family friendly nature of the properties (21%) are two further factors that will influence hotel choice, according to the survey.
“Value reigns supreme in the search for hotels this summer,” said Chief Marketing Officer Stephany Verstraete. “Today’s savvy traveler is looking beyond room rates alone to added value extras such as complimentary Wi-Fi or free breakfast, family-friendly properties and more.”
Those from the UK who are planning to stay in a hotel between May and August 2013 are expected to spend, on average, £1,116, which translates to an estimated national spend of £27 billion on hotel rooms for the busy summer travel season.
Slight Increase in Nights Away
Travellers from the UK plan to stay more than a week (average of 10 nights) in hotels this summer for leisure with 27% planning to spend longer away than they did last summer. When it comes to opening their wallets, just over seven out of ten travellers (73%) plan to spend about the same amount per night as they did last summer for a hotel room and 14% plan to spend more while a similar number say they will spend less.
Make Room for Facilities
When asked about what their favourite part of staying in a hotel while on holiday was, 68% said the facilities on offer. Having a professional make the bed and tidy the room (housekeeping) came in second at 14%.
It was also found that those surveyed were quite specific on the location of rooms within hotels and where they would or would not choose to stay: 40% of those surveyed said they would pass on a room located near the lift; 22% gave the cold shoulder to rooms neighbouring the ice machine; 39% would avoid rooms near the restaurant or bar and both first floor rooms and rooms next to the pool rate low on the list of location preferences.
“Taking it Easy” Tops Summer Travel Plans
Relaxation topped results for holidaying this summer, with 68% of those surveyed saying they plan to take it easy at the beach, on an island or at a spa. City sight-seeing trips that include shopping came in second at 51% followed by family or school reunions (27%) and famous UK sites and National Park exploration such as Stonehenge, Snowdonia, etc. at (19%). Just under half (49%) plan to travel with a spouse or significant other, 37% plan to travel with immediate family, including spouses and kids and 23% plan to enjoy their holiday with friends.
Research and Booking Methods
Interestingly 52% of all those interviewed plan to book their holidays over a month in advance while 38% leave planning to anywhere between a week and a month prior to travel. The remaining (and spontaneous) 10% state that they are happy to make a booking with as little as a week before travel. Notably, nearly three quarters (74%) will not let budget determine their destination of choice, choosing instead to pick their preferred location first and then select the best accommodation option for their budget.
Over half of those surveyed intend to use one of a number of social media channels when planning travels this summer with around 45% taking into consideration reviews featured on sites such as Trip Advisor, around 17% plan to read travel blogs for inspiration and 16% will review friends’ social posts and comments to get ideas and inspiration on all elements of travel including location, hotels and airlines.