Rural staycations on the rise as Brits who holiday at home swap the city for the countryside

Holidaymakers seeking value for money find it in rural retreats according to HomeAway data


London, UK, 7 February 2018 – New data released today by HomeAway®, the holiday rental expert, reveals the most in demand destinations from its British holidaymakers last year and how the price has fluctuated year-on-year. Demand for rural HomeAway holidays increased in 2017 as ‘staycationers’ abandoned London for the likes of Lincolnshire, Gloucestershire and Devon.

HomeAway’s 2017 data can provide destination inspiration for those looking to book a value for money holiday abroad or somewhere closer to home, and a holiday rental can be the perfect match for Brits looking for an escape that doesn’t break the bank. 

There have been fluctuations over the past year in the destinations where HomeAway has seen the most demand, and likewise in those which provide the best value for money for British travellers. 

Outbound destination demand for holiday rentals abroad on the HomeAway UK site changed in 2017 vs. 2016. In 2016, Spain dominated the list of most in-demand destinations with Spanish destinations Malaga, Barcelona and Mallorca taking all three top spots. In 2017 however, tastes shifted and we saw different destinations took the top spots, with high demand seen in totally new destinations.

The most in demand outbound holiday destinations in 2017 by HomeAway British travellers were:

  1. La Caleta, Canary Islands, Spain
    • Demand up nearly 465% on 2016
    • Average price paid per person per night in 2017 £47
    • Price down under -5% on 2016
  2. Avoriaz, Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, France
    • Demand up 345% on 2016
    • Average price paid per person per night in 2017 £44
    • Price up more than +20% on 2016
  3. Quarteira, Faro District, Portugal
    • Demand up 310% on 2016
    • Average price paid per person per night in 2017 £31
    • Price up nearly +30% on 2016

Furthermore, domestic demand by HomeAway UK customers saw a big shift too. In 2016 there was a significant rise in demand for staycation destinations since the EU referendum, and that has continued in 2017. London has previously always made an appearance high on the list, in price and demand alike, but in 2017, the biggest demand was witnessed in more rural holiday locations. Whether this represents a long-term shift away from the capital city remains to be seen.

The most in demand staycation holiday destinations for HomeAway UK customers in 2017 were:

  1. Lincoln, Lincolnshire
    • Demand up 285% on 2016
    • Average price paid per person per night in 2017 £35
    • Price down -25% on 2016
  2. Bourton-on-the-Water, Gloucestershire
    • Demand up almost 275% on 2016
    • Average price paid per person per night in 2017 £48
    • Price up over +10% on 2016
  3. Shaldon, Devon
    • Demand up nearly 275% on 2016
    • Average price paid per person per night in 2017 £40
    • Price down slightly on 2016

Elena Novokreshchenova, Regional Director UK & Ireland and Emerging Markets at HomeAway says: “The findings paint a positive picture for the UK travel industry post-Brexit. Brits are continuing to prioritise their holidays whether at home or abroad, but they’re adapting around the socio-political climate to make this valued experience work for them financially. Furthermore, the UK remains an attractive destination for in-bound tourists, benefitting from the weaker pound and the strength of the dollar and Euro to save money on their UK holidays. Ultimately, holidaymakers are looking for better value for money coupled with their perfect match in accommodation.”

The UK remains a popular destination for overseas visitors. Unsurprisingly, London took all the top spots when it comes to demand from foreign visitors, showing the Brexit effect has likely done little damage to the appeal of the capital city. However, overseas tourists might be best placed to get their destination inspiration from British HomeAway travellers, who paid far less for their holiday accommodation at home in 2017 in the more rural destinations detailed above.

The most in demand British destinations in 2017 for HomeAway travellers from overseas were:

  1. Lancaster Gate, London
    • Demand up almost 430% on 2016
    • Average price paid per person per night in 2017 £54
    • Price down nearly -10% on 2016
  2. Barking and Dagenham, London
    • Demand up over 330% on 2016
    • Average price paid per person per night in 2017 £60
    • Price down more than -5% on 2016
  3. West Brompton, London
    • Demand up over 275% on 2016
    • Average price paid per person per night in 2017 £70
    • Price up almost +10% on 2016

The big spenders for HomeAway holiday homes in the UK in 2017 are not Europeans either. Although travellers from Europe undoubtedly still visit the UK, the data proves they aren’t investing as much into their accommodation whilst they are here. While American tourists remained the big spender’s year on year, the tourists from the UAE and Brazil entered the fold last year, which is a surprising change on 2016’s spenders all from western economies.

The biggest spenders on HomeAway for holiday homes in the UK in 2017 were tourists from:

  1. USA
    • Average price paid per person per night in 2017 £63
  2. United Arab Emirates
    • Average price paid per person per night in 2017 £63
  3. Brazil
    • Average price paid per person per night in 2017 £61

The biggest spenders on HomeAway for holiday homes in the UK in 2016 were tourists from:

  1. USA
    • Average price paid per person per night in 2017 £62
  2. Canada
    • Average price paid per person per night in 2017 £54
  3. Australia
    • Average price paid per person per night in 2017 £52

To find your perfect match in some of the world’s best holiday rentals visit: www.homeaway.co.uk, where you can find a property for family or group holidays, staycations or weekend breaks.


Notes to editors

All data is based on HomeAway demand between 1 January – 30 November 2017 vs. 1 January – 30 November 2016 and reflects the actually paid prices by HomeAway customers from the UK or travelling to the UK. For more information, please contact homeaway@hotwireglobal.com.

About HomeAway

HomeAway, based in Austin, Texas, is the world leader in holiday rentals with sites representing more than one million online bookable holiday rental homes in 190 countries, and is a part of the Expedia, Inc. family of brands. For more information about HomeAway, please visit www.homeaway.co.uk.

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