Planning Your Summer Holiday

Time for something completely different?

It seems that the 'staycation' is so last year, if the heavy demand that airlines and travel companies are now reporting is anything to go by. And yet, according to research from AA Travel Insurance, half of the millions expected to get away this summer are creatures of habit and will be taking just the same kind of holiday they usually take. Perhaps surprisingly, 1 out of 7 (15%) say they'll to go to the place they always go to.

However, 28% are taking the opportunity to 'try something new'.

The research among 3,000 Brits also shows that just over half (51%) will spend their holiday on the beach, almost a third (31%) sight-seeing, and over a fifth (22%) absorbing the local culture.*

It's also clear that the role of the traditional High Street travel agent is diminishing with only (18%) booking their holiday in this way.

Teresa Brewer of AA Travel Insurance, says: "Given that nearly half of travellers (47%) say that the economic situation means they are being careful about how much they spend, it's perhaps not surprising that well over half (55%) look for the best deals by searching for their holiday online.

"The uncertain economy in some European destinations means that there are plenty of holiday bargains to be had, especially for those who book late.

"In fact, 40% of those booking online are arranging their flights, hotels, hire cars and other components separately," Teresa points out.

"This certainly means that your holiday will only be constrained by your imagination and your budget," she says. "But the danger is that by doing it this way you may not be covered by ABTA or other protection if one of the companies you book with goes bust – so it's vital that you choose travel insurance that includes financial failure protection.

"But regardless of how you arrange your holiday, travel insurance really is vital and I am concerned that a quarter (24%) say they don't take out travel cover.

"It's also a good idea to sort your holiday money out in advance: for example using a Travel Currency Card that you can load in advance and avoid the unwelcome charges that often come with credit or debit card purchases or taking out cash locally."

* OnePoll researched 3,000 holidaymakers for AA Travel Insurance in December 2010.