Expedia sees increased foreign interest in UK Christmas breaks

An increasing number of overseas visitors are considering the UK for a Christmas break, according to the latest hotel search data compiled by Expedia Inc.

Travellers from Italy, Spain, Germany and Belgium have recorded triple digit growth in the number of searches for UK hotels compared to last year, with the largest increase coming from Italy (up 250%) and Spain (up by nearly 200%).

Searches from American travellers have more than doubled, while those in Hong Kong and Singapore have also increased their browsing activity.

Data from the Christmas period last year shows that overseas travellers stayed longer, booked further in advance and paid more compared to their UK counterparts.

US visitors on average paid £139 per room, booked more 33 days in advance and stayed for more than two days.

This compared to UK guests who paid an average of £92, booked 27 days out and stayed for just over one day.

Visitors from Italy booked over 48 days ahead, stayed for three days and paid £122 on average, while Spanish travellers booking window was just over 35 days with a stay of nearly three days at a rate of £108 per room.

London and Edinburgh remain the top two most popular search destinations for overseas travellers, with both cities recording an increase in the number of people looking to book hotels (22% and 44% respectively).

Manchester, Birmingham and Liverpool and Glasgow were also among the top 10 popular searches.

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