British tourists are flocking back to Spain and the Canary Islands this summer, after many shunned traditional Euro zone breaks last year in a bid to save money. Online travel and leisure retailer lastminute.com today revealed that destinations in Spain and the Canary Islands were amongst its biggest growing breaks this year, compared with the summer of 2009.
Gran Canaria has seen the biggest boost, with bookings back up 479%. Fuerteventura has also seen many more visitors in 2010, bookings were up 340% compared with July 2009. The other Canary Islands have also seen visitor numbers rise; Lanzarote is up 132% and Tenerife by 92%. Mainland Spain has also attracted more visitors than in 2009, bookings to the coastal region of Costa Blanca were up 160% this year.
These destinations have historically been popular with British holidaymakers, but bookings dropped last year due to the strong Euro, giving non-Euro destinations such as Egypt, Morocco, and Tunisia a boost in bookings. Consumers even decided to enjoy their free time in the UK instead of taking their usual two weeks in the sun.
“In 2009 consumers were looking away from their traditional two weeks in the Spanish sun, and exploring non-Euro countries where the exchange rate was more favourable” said Mark Bower, Head of Lifestyle at lastminute.com. “Those destinations continue to generate bookings, but as the pound has regained strength along with the economy, consumers have been returning to their old favourites such as Tenerife and Lanzarote. We’re thrilled to see Spain and the Canary Islands back in our best sellers.”