May 21, 2024

South West News

South West News from Gloucestershire to Cornwall

Motorhome Firm Sees Surge in UK holiday bookings – as families seek ‘stress-free’ choice

A motorhome hire firm has seen a TENFOLD increase in last-minute bookings this summer – as airport and port chaos continues.

Matt Sims of The Motorhome Holiday Company in Hewish, Somerset, believes the spike in demand is due to flight and ferry delays.

Matt Sims of The Motorhome Company
Matt Sims of The Motorhome Company.

He said: “It’s the first time we’ve seen such an influx in last-minute bookings and many customers say they have been put off by the uncertainty at airports and gridlock at Dover.

“They want to enjoy a stress-free holiday, with control over how and when they travel, and this is an appealing choice.”

The Motorhome Holiday Company was fully booked last summer as Brits looked to take a staycation because of Covid-19 restrictions around foreign travel.

But while people previously booked at least a month in advance – they are leaving it to just days in advance in some cases.

One customer, Sophie Slavin, decided to take a last-minute motorhome holiday with her family and dog because flights during school holidays were expensive and she was worried the trip might not go ahead.

Sophie, who heads SAS Creative marketing services in Bristol, said their group of eight and Millie, the Jack Russell, had greater control over their travel and at a fraction of the price.

Millie the Jack Russell
Millie the Jack Russell enjoys the beach

Travel with pets

She said: “We planned to go abroad but the flights were extortionate – particularly during the school holidays – and we’d seen flights cancelled or delayed, with people stranded in airports.

“It didn’t look like an appealing or affordable option. We wanted to get away as a family and decided to try the motorhome option, which worked out at around a fifth of the cost.

“We loved having the freedom to go where we wanted to go. We picked a spot on the UK map at random and off we went to Pembrokeshire for a family adventure.”

Sophie, a keen horse rider who has  taken her daughter’s pony, Angel, to care homes for several years, said the motorhome experience ensured they spent quality time together and could bring their dog, Millie.

Millie the Jack Russell on board a motorhome.
Millie in the Motorhome

She added: “There was no stress. There was no worrying about where the luggage was – everything was where it should be.”

Advance booking

But Matt of The Motorhome Holiday Company is urging people to book in advance where possible to guarantee availability for preferred dates.

The company is offering free fuel refill for bookings of five days or more made now for July and August.

Matt said: “We’ve been able to accommodate the late bookings so far – but early booking ensures you avoid possible disappointment.”