Early bookings to Portugal and Turkey doing particularly well for 2008, according to ABTA as it released an end of year set of holiday trends.
Almost 70 million visits abroad were taken by UK resident in 2007 and while trips to Europe have broadly stayed the same, travel to the US rose by 3% while the biggest growth is in long haul travel, up by about 10%.
Destination Hot Spots for 2008 include China with the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing; Singapore, which will host the first Formula 1 night race on September 28; and Australia, due to blockbuster films and sporting events such as the Rugby League World Cup in October.
Other places highlighted include Colombia due to improved political stability combined with the release of Mike Newell’s film of Gabriel Garcia Maquez’s novel Love in the Time of Cholera, which has been filmed in Cartagena, widely thought of as the most beautiful city in South America.
But ABTA cautioned: “Although Colombia’s has many stunning areas, not all of its problems have been resolved and it is important for anyone planning a trip to keen a close watch on the Foreign Office’s travel advice.”
The 60th anniversary of the state of Israel will bring the spotlight on the nation in 2008 helped by new flights to Tel Aviv.
The United Arab Emirates capital Abu Dhabi is described as the new Dubai with plans to add 25,000 hotel rooms in the next few years and a Guggenheim museum.
In Dubai, 2008 will see the QE2 make its final voyage from the UK and become a floating hotel in the Emirate.
Oman, Arabia’s fastest growing, and greenest destination has added more luxury resorts and has two of the world’s best hotels in the capital Muscat – the Chedi and the newly refurbished palatial Al Bustan.
Euro 2008 in Austria and Switzerland will still draw football fans to soak up the atmosphere despite the home nations failing to qualify for the tournament.
Syria’s second city Aleppo is set to benefit from new BMI flights from the UK following its acquisition of the BMED franchise.
Quebec City’s 400th anniversary year will help draw more travellers to Canada for experience-driven holidays.
ABTA believes 2008 is the year for Botswana as Precious Ramotswe, the charming but feisty owner of Botswana’s No.1 Ladies’ Detective Agency, is brought to life on TV.
Finally, a total eclipse will fall across Siberia on August 1 and Berlin will be marking 60 years since the airlift in 1948.
The Top Destinations we are travelling to:
|Holiday Destinations||Package Holiday Destinations|
|1. Spain||1. Spain|
|2. France||2. France|
|3. USA||3. Greece|
|4. Italy||4. Turkey|
|5. Greece||5. USA|
|6. Ireland||6. Italy|
|7. Portugal||7. Cyprus|
|8. Cyprus||8. Portugal|
|9. Turkey||9. Caribbean|
|10. Netherlands||10. Egypt|
Spain will continue to be the number one holiday destination of choice for Brits in 2008, according to ABTA. One of the main events in 2008 in Spain is Expo Zaragoza 2008 from June 14 to September 14.
Also next summer, Valencia will use the America’s Cup marina to host a grand prix race on the first Formula One street course to be constructed since the US Grand Prix route in Phoenix, Arizona in 1989.