A combination of good early summer weather and economic uncertainty produced a late booking surge for UK-based holidays, with many people leaving their holiday decisions to the last minute.

The General Manager of Visit Devon, Rosie Bates, says that there are complex reasons for this trend: “Uncertainty about the economic future and the emergency budget led many people to delay making a decision about their holidays this year. The exchange rate with the euro and dollar and the problems with air travel have all helped to encourage people to holiday at home. On the positive side the good weather has definitely helped attract visitors to make late bookings for holidays in Devon.”

The surge in UK holidays follows news that last year the number of trips made by Brits to foreign countries fell at the fastest rate since the 1970s, according to the Office for National Statistics.

In 2009 the ONS recorded 58.6 million trips, down from 69 million in 2008, and says the number of foreign visitors coming to Britain also fell, though only from 31.1 million to 29.9 million. That’s in sharp contrast to the previous 25 years, when trips abroad grew on average by 4 per cent a year and trips into the UK by 3.2 per cent.

Click here to view list of reports from ONS

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