Surge in travel searches after High Court term-time ruling

Surge in travel searches after High Court term-time ruling

A surge in demand for term-time travel has been sparked after Friday’s High Court victory for a father who refused to pay a fine for taking his daughter out of school for a holiday.

Analysis of fight searches to a snapshot of popular family holiday destinations, including Lanzarote, Malaga, Gran Canaria and Florida, shows demands for travel during the spring and autumn term-time periods jumped by as much as 50% since the Jon Platt ruling was announced.

Conversely, flight searches to the same destinations for travel during the school summer holidays dipped significantly over the weekend, according to Cheapflights.co.uk.

Managing director Andrew Shelton said: “Jon Platt’s victory at the High Court appears to have encouraged some parents to re-visit their holiday plans for 2016, and look at the cost savings that can be made if they travel outside of the school holidays.”

Flight searches to Lanzarote were up 50% for travel during the spring term-time and up 32% for departures during the autumn term-time. But searches to Lanzarote for travel during the school summer holidays were 15% down.

Similarly, since the news broke that judges ruled a council could not legally force a fine on Platt, searches on the Cheapflights website to Malaga jumped by 21% for travel during the spring term-time and 50% for travel during the autumn term-time but were down 18% for travel during the school summer holidays.

Searches were up 47% and 24% respectively for travel to Orlando and Gran Canaria during the spring term-time.

“What we’re calling the ‘Platt Effect’ drove a significant spike over the weekend in flight searches to popular family holiday destinations for travel during term time dates versus the school summer holiday period,” Shelton said.

“Nevertheless, the nuances of this ruling were very specific and parents must continue to ensure they are fully aware of the policies of their local authority before booking a flight.”

He added: “Tuesday’s are the cheapest days to book, and generally the best fares are advertised about 50 days ahead of departure with the most expensive being seen three days before travel.

“The time of your flight departure can also impact flight costs; morning flights tend to be more expensive so those who have the flexibility to travel between 6pm and midnight can benefit from savings.

“Furthermore, Friday is consistently the most expensive day to fly because of the increased demand of those trying to get away for the weekend.

“It’s also worth considering currency fluctuations – where the pound has strength against the local currency will also provide families with more bang for their buck.”

Sunshine.co.uk earlier claimed a 88% spike in family bookings during school term time in the wake of the High Court ruling and a 32% slump in peak school holiday travel times between the end of July and August.

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