Spanish love affair? Is it over?

Details from Skyscanner show that the long running British love affair with Spain could be coming to a natural conclusion.

By looking at flight search data for travellers over the Easter break, Skyscanner points out that although Spain remains the most popular country overall for holidaying Britons, it’s not as popular as it was even just one year back.

London is the most searched for destination for Easter travel by UK-based travellers. But then London does the city itself have an amazing range and number of attractions for families and couples, and it is also a hub for travellers heading for destinations outside the UK.

Malaga is still the second most popular place for an Easter holiday for the second year running. But as pointed out, there has been a noticeable reduction in popularity for Spain compared to Easter 2009. For example searches for flights to Alicante fell three places whilst poor old Palma dropped out of the top ten completely!

Searches for flights to Amsterdam were shown to be on the rise, up two places. Barcelona stuck where it was at number three. However, New York has show up as a surprise placement. Entirely missing from last Easter’s top ten, flights to New York are now a credible fifth most popular search for British travellers for this Easter period.

Dublin is still there at eight; Paris dropped two whole places to nine. However, Geneva was a like New York, a new entry. This time at ten. Skyscanner believes that the superb ski season in Europe this year might have something to do with this, with more people booking late ski breaks. Berlin, Istanbul and Marrakech all featured in the top 20.

Barry Smith, Skyscanner Co-founder and Business Development Director points out: “Spain’s long domination over the British tourist market may be on the wane. Whilst it’s still the most popular country for an Easter break, it seems to be falling from favour.  Meanwhile, New York has risen massively and we’re seeing less well known destinations such as Marrakech and Istanbul rise in popularity. UK destinations are also faring well with three in the top 20, suggesting the ‘staycation’ trend is alive and well.”

1. London (UK) [0]
2. Malaga (Spain) [0]
3. Amsterdam (Netherlands) [+2]
4. Barcelona (Spain) [0]
5. New York (USA) [NEW ENTRY]
6. Alicante (Spain) [-3]
7. Rome (Italy) [-1]
8. Dublin (Ireland) [0]
9. Paris (France) [-2]
10. Geneva (Switzerland) [NEW ENTRY]
11. Palma (Spain)
12. Berlin (Germany)
13. Faro (Portugal)
14. Marrakech (Morocco)
15. Prague (Czech Republic)
16. Istanbul (Turkey)
17. Edinburgh (UK)
18. Milan (Italy)
19. Madrid (Spain)
20. Belfast (UK)

Is the British love affair with Spain over? Who knows? Perhaps we will have to wait ’til next year’s top ten to find out?

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