- Tickets 12 per cent cheaper in January
- Save 50 per cent by booking five months ahead
- Glasgow most expensive UK departure point, Edinburgh is cheapest
- Average length of a holiday has dropped to 12 days
- Travellers most likely to be from London, Bristol & Glasgow
- ‘David’ & ‘Susan’ most likely to book a holiday to Australia
- Doha & Hong Kong are fastest growing connections
- Premium economy fares 34 per cent cheaper year-on-year
- Interest in Cairns and Gold Coast has skyrocketed
- 27 per cent increase in Brummies booking to Australia
To celebrate Australia Day, Flight Centre, the world’s number one travel agent to Australia, has launched its first ever Australia Travel Trends Report.* Taking insight from the company’s bookings data, the report is packed with stats, trends and predictions around travel Down Under.
Alison Zacher, Retail MD at Flight Centre UK, said: “2016 has been a challenging year for the travel industry as a whole but British holidaymakers are continuing to travel abroad. Despite the odds being seemingly against Australia, the destination has had a strong year and, to celebrate Australia Day, we’re proud to launch Flight Centre’s first ever Australia Travel Trends Report packed with stats on who is travelling to Oz, booking trends and best ways to get a great deal.”
The report, which can be downloaded here, includes findings such as:
January Blues (and Rock Bottom Fares) Increase Bookings
Post-Christmas is the busiest time for Australia bookings with a 30 per cent increase in sales in January compared to an average month. It’s also the cheapest month: tickets are on average 12 per cent cheaper in January than during the rest of the year.
Save 50 Per Cent on Flights by Booking Ahead
The cheapest time to book flights to Australia is between five and seven months before travelling, which can be up to 50 per cent cheaper than booking two months ahead.
From Glasgow? Fly from Edinburgh for Cheaper Fares
Glasgow is the most expensive UK departure point (economy) and Edinburgh is the cheapest. On average, there’s a 22 per cent price difference between the two airports, which are just 47 miles apart.
Holidays to Australia Becoming Shorter
In 2016, the average person spent 12 days in Australia compared to 15 days in previous years, possibly due to the destination becoming so much more affordable to travel to.
Travellers to Oz Most Likely to be from London, Bristol & Glasgow
Those living in the country’s capital city are far more likely to travel to Australia: there were 162 per cent more bookings from Londoners than those from Bristol, which came second. Also making the top 10 were Glasgow, Brighton, Guildford (Surrey), St Albans & Hemel Hampstead, Edinburgh, Chelmsford, Manchester and Tonbridge.
Interestingly, many of the top UK regions for bookings to Australia share a location name with their Australian counterpart; Brighton is also a city in Melbourne, while there’s an Edinburgh in Adelaide and a Guildford in Perth!
David and Susan Most Likely to Visit Australia
David and Susan are the most popular male and female names travelling Down Under. Men named David (1st place) made the most bookings overall, with John (2), Michael (3), James (4) and Andrew (5) also making the top spots. Susan and Sarah were the top women’s names taking seventh and tenth place overall with Elizabeth (12), Margaret (14) and Linda (15) also in the top five for women. Overall, women (58 per cent) are more likely to make a booking to Australia than men (42 per cent).
Doha and Hong Kong are Fastest Growing Connections
Doha is the fastest growing connection to Australia (60 per cent year-on-year increase in stopovers) followed by Hong Kong (21 per cent year-on-year increase). Dubai remains the busiest hub for travellers heading to Australia followed by Singapore. Around five per cent of people will make the most of their stopover by staying more than a day in Dubai.
Business Class Becoming More Affordable
Business class fares are now on average 10 per cent less expensive than a year ago, premium economy as much as 34 per cent cheaper and first class up seven per cent.
1,140 Per Cent Increase in Flights to the Gold Coast
From 2012 to 2016, the volume of flights to Perth have remained the same while Melbourne (31 per cent), Sydney (24 per cent), Adelaide (18 per cent) and Brisbane (11 per cent) have seen steady growth. Flights to Gold Coast Airport (1,140 per cent) and Cairns (298 per cent) have skyrocketed over the same period.
Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane & Perth Remain on Top
Overall, bookings to Australia are on the up with Flight Centre now offering flights to 46 Australian destinations compared to 34 in 2012. The most popular destinations have remained consistent over the last four years with Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth making up around 90 per cent of all tickets sold. Statistics showed 30 per cent of people who fly to one city go on to fly to another destination within the country during their trip.
More Brummies Heading Down Under
Ticket numbers from Birmingham have shot up by 27 per cent over the past four years.
Predictions: 2017 and beyond
- Rock-bottom flight fares: To compensate for the weak pound, the market will become extremely competitive with airlines releasing record-low fares and flash sales to Australia and other long-haul destinations.
- Increase in popularity to Perth: The popularity of Perth will skyrocket with the 2018 launch of non-stop Qantas flights. In five years’ time, it may even overtake Brisbane or Melbourne to become one of the top three most visited cities in Aus.
- Bleisure Boom: As negotiations to leave the EU mean an uncertain UK economy, ‘bleisure’ bookings are likely to boom as people tag holidays onto work trips to make funds work harder for them.
Return flights to Australia for just £429 – for one day only!
Flight Centre is offering customers the chance to snap up return fares to Australia from just £429 in an special Australia Day flash sale.* Flights depart London Heathrow for Perth, Sydney and Melbourne with Etihad, with a stop at Abu Dhabi en-route.
There will be 26 tickets only available from 10am on the 26 January 2017. Departures must take place between 17 April to 30 June 2017 and 01–30 Nov 2017. These incredible fares are expected to sell out very quickly so customers are advised to visit their nearest Flight Centre store or call 0800 082 5890 at 10am on 26 January to avoid missing out.
The Flight Centre Travel Group (fctgl.com) is one of the world’s largest travel companies. Since establishing the first Flight Centre store in 1995, the business has grown its team of Travel Experts to include over 80 stores within the United Kingdom, with new stores opening regularly. Worldwide, Flight Centre has 2,500 stores globally, making it one of the largest and most successful independent travel retailers in the world.
The Flight Centre team are experts when it comes to travel and are committed to providing customers with a great experience. They can organise anything from flights to holidays, hotels, car hire, tours, travel insurance, visas and more.
To book, visit one of Flight Centre’s 84 stores across the UK or visit www.flightcentre.co.uk.
Notes to Editors
* To download the full report CLICK HERE
For further press information, please contact:
Melissa Hobson/Natalie Garland/James Brooke
T: +44 (0)20 3440 8927
About the Flight Centre Travel Group (FCTG)
The Flight Centre Travel Group (fctgl.com) is one of the world’s largest travel companies with over 18,000 staff and 2500 stores across its leisure, corporate and wholesale businesses. The company’s turnover in 2014/2015 financial year was £9 billion. After starting with one shop 30 years ago, FCTG has enjoyed remarkable growth and is one of the top 100 publicly listed companies on the Australian Securities Exchange.
All specialist brands under the FCTG Corporate banner offer 24/7 support and the benefits of a blended offline/online solution; global negotiation strength and unique and superior business travel products.
About Flight Centre
The team at Flight Centre are experts when it comes to travel and are committed to providing customers with a great experience. The company’s success comes down to its people, experienced Travel Experts who are passionate about finding their customers the holiday they want, for the price they want.
Since establishing the first Flight Centre store in 1995, the business has grown its team of Travel Experts to include over 80 stores within the United Kingdom, with new stores opening regularly. Worldwide, Flight Centre has an amazing 2,500 stores across the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, United States, Canada and more, making Flight Centre one of the largest and most successful independent travel retailers in the world. With its global reach and close relationships with the world’s best travel providers, the company is able to provide competitive travel deals.
The Flight Centre team can organise anything from flights to tailor-made holidays, hotels, car hire, tours, travel insurance, visas and more. They also have dedicated First and Business Class flight teams and Business Travel teams to help with any specialised travel needs.