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Are we seeing the last run on the UK holiday market?

TUI Travel, which includes the Thomson Travel brand, has reported a surprising surge in summer holiday bookings over the last few weeks. While the UK market as a whole is down by a modest 7%, against 18% across the company's key markets, there has been a reduction in capacity in the region of 17% to try and reduce any potential losses in the short to medium term.

While the weakening of the UK pounds against the likes of the euro and other leading currencies has affected holiday bookings to Europe, there has been a significant surge in interest in areas such as Egypt (up 18% over the last four weeks) and Turkey, which has shown a rise of around 8% compared to the same period last year. It seems that while many UK consumers are still very concerned about the outlook for the economy and their own job security they still need their holiday break abroad.

It was also interesting to see that on the whole the cost of holidays abroad has risen by around 10% which is far higher than any inflation measure. Quite how long this upsurge in bookings can continue remains to be seen but obviously the longer the UK economic crisis drags on the less free money many people will have to spend.

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