Online bookings soar after New Year
Online travel agents saw bookings jump 31% in January in comparison to the same month in 2010, new figures have shown.
People seemed to be more interested in heading to the airport and jetting off on their holidays after the severe winter weather, boosted by the January sales offered by many travel operators.
Online holiday bookings were up 173% on December, with people on average spending £886 on their trip – the highest figure since December 2008.
Overall, consumers spent £5.1bn online during the month, up 21% year-on-year, according to the IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index.
Chris Webster, head of retail consulting and technology at Capgemini, said: “It seems that the British consumer is looking ahead to sunnier times and taking full advantage of the big New Year sales offered by the major travel operators.”
IMRG spokeswoman Tina Spooner said: “While the index results for January show a very encouraging start to the year for e-retailers, it is important to note this strong growth is on the back of the lowest-ever annual growth recorded in January last year when the e-retail market grew just 4.6%.
“Sales of travel were strong during January, particularly after the severe winter weather in December. Clearly Britons are not tightening their belts where holidays are concerned, with the index recording the highest average spend in this sector in over two years.”
Copyright Press Association 2011