Out with the EU in with the East

Our 2019 Thomas Cook Holiday Report is finally here, giving you the low down on what’s hot and what’s not for holidays this year and destinations outside of the EU are making a statement.

Turkey

Turkey has been making a comeback, rising up the ranks of our destination league table over the last couple of years.  This year it has reached a new peak, with flight-only bookings to Turkey seeing a 27% increase compared to last summer. Turkey is now a 2019 tourism hotspot thanks to its great value for money offered by its five-star resorts and for being outside the EU.

Its diversity alone is an attraction in its own right, with its picture-perfect sandy beaches, snow-capped mountains, salt lakes, ancient ruins, blue lagoons and night bazaars all bringing their own appeal. Food is a top priority for tourists today and Turkey’s fertile lands mean plenty of mouth-watering fresh produce will find its way onto your plate – both in and out of the hotels.

 

Tunisia

Back in 2014, before the attacks in Sousse, Tunisia was our third most popular year-round destination. Following the change to the Foreign Office advice in February 2018, Tunisia has climbed back up the league table. With many refurbished hotels, a number of initiatives to boost tourism and a range of family-friendly expeditions on its doorstep, it is now our seventh most popular destination this summer.

Tunisia

And the rest

The charms of Greece and its many islands continue to entice us, sitting at third position in our holiday rankings this year. The USA continues to hold fourth place with a diversity that’s hard to match and action-packed city breaks to New York and Las Vegas are exciting.  Florida remains a firm family favourite – and mine too!

Knocking the Caribbean off the number five spot is Cyprus, which is popular partly due to its reputation as a destination for exotic weddings.

Sunset over Pefkos beach in Rhodes in Greece

Sunset over Pefkos beach in Rhodes in Greece

Quick breaks

Sometimes you just need a quick break. Holidays don’t have to be a week or longer, it’s best to get the most out of your annual leave by flying short-haul for a few days.

We are also seeing an increasing number of trips for less than seven days to long-haul destinations, with Mexico, San Francisco and other cities in the States rocketing in popularity.

Us savvy travellers know all the tricks to maximise our holiday time. I prefer not to be over-burdened with baggage, which means sometimes sharing a hold bag.  Our Economy Light fares were introduced last October, offering the chance for long-haul travellers to go without any hold baggage. The service is particularly good for breaks to New York, Orlando and Cape Town.

We also recently-launched Sleeper Seat, which allows you to turn a row of economy seats into your very own bed! Which means a better night sleep and more time having fun on holiday, or time to recharge and rest on the way home before heading back to work

Aside from its attractiveness for being outside of the EU, driving Turkey as a 2019 tourism hotspot is its value for money and diversity.

Picture-perfect sandy beaches, snow-capped mountains, salt lakes, ancient ruins, blue lagoons and night bazaars all bring their own appeal. Food is a top priority for tourists today and Turkey’s fertile lands mean plenty of mouth-watering fresh produce will find its way onto your plate – both in and out of the hotels.

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