The number of domestic holidays taken by people in the UK was up 13 per cent in the first four months of this year, according to figures released today by VisitEngland.
While overall trips within the UK, including business trips and visiting friends and family, were stable from January to April, VisitEngland's UK Tourism Survey found that Brits took 1.2 million more holidays and spent 5 million extra nights' holiday than during the same period in 2008.
VisitEngland chief executive James Berresford said it was too early to tell if the holidaying at home trend would continue throughout the summer, but said that the fact more trips had been taken within the UK in the first part of the year was good news for the leisure and hospitality sectors.
"England is well-deserved of its time in the spotlight and we are confident that once people have experienced the beauty and uniqueness of the English country, landscapes, coastal regions, cultural urban centres and world-class attractions - not to mention the delicious range of local food and produce - they’ll be hooked for good," he said.
The monthly report also showed that overall trips taken in England increased by 34 per cent in April, which it attributes to the Easter break, while business travel was down 11 per cent for the four month period and total spend on overnight travel was down 5 per cent.
"We know that businesses are still having a tough time and business travel is still a big concern which we will continue to monitor – however it seems for now that leisure travel is helping to keep the numbers at the same level as last year, which is a certainly encouraging given the differences in the economic climate in the two comparative years," said Berresford.