Quarter of Brits planning UK road trip as staycation boom continues

Car driving on a rural road in the Scottish Highlands

Looking to get away this winter? While some people are choosing to jet off to sunnier climes, more Brits are shunning trips abroad in favour of domestic holidays.

Despite the chilly temperatures, 13% of us plan to holiday closer to home this winter, compared with 9% planning a trip abroad, according to research from Volkswagen Financial Services (VWFS).

Road trip interest on the rise

As the staycation trend that has become popular during the pandemic looks set to continue, the study also shows that 24% are planning a domestic road trip in the next few months compared with 20% hoping to head overseas.

With Covid intermittently restricting foreign travel, cars have become more central to family outings and camper van sales have rocketed as holidaymakers look for alternative ways to take a break.

The enduring appeal of holidaying at home is a continuation of a trend that started in the summer of 2020, with research finding that about half of Brits have become more interested in road trips and holidaying in the UK.

The seaside is the most popular choice for a staycation, with 33% of votes, followed by countryside retreats (25%) and city breaks (13%).

WFH (work from holiday) a new trend

So why the boom in winter staycations? VWFS data analysts reckon it could be because many people’s ongoing work from home arrangements mean they can take their laptops away with them and enjoy a change of scenery, without using up any of their annual leave.

Mike Todd, CEO at VWFS UK, says: “Holidaymakers were swapping their passports for walking boots and picnic blankets when staycations took off again last summer, but I don’t believe many people expected domestic getaways to be quite so popular this winter.”

He believes the research highlights “the renewed importance of personal vehicles as people are reliant on their cars for domestic holidays now that flying overseas is again fraught with uncertainty”.

He adds: “There are so many wonderful places to explore on these shores, from St Ives to Scarborough, and our vehicles are central to unlocking these adventures – even the great British weather isn’t stopping people enjoying a good old-fashioned road trip!”

Planning a summer staycation too? Discover where to go with our guide to the UK’s best summer road trips.

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