By Humphrey Carter
BRITAIN'S holiday habits may be changing, but the bulk of the country is still spending its summer breaks in the good old traditional destinations like Majorca. The alleged demise of the traditional package holiday as more and more Britons book on line and travel independently, more often than not flying with a low-cost airline, is making life difficult and more competitive for the tour operators and travel agents, but Britons are still travelling to the same old, tried and destination holiday hot spots. A report released by low coast carrier easyJet yesterday confirms that, as far as their passenger figures are concerned, the top destination in Spain with the Costas proving more popular this year than Majorca. Malaga is the airline's top resort destination this summer followed by Alicante, Nice and then Palma.
Faro in Portugal is the fifth most popular resort destination.
This summer 1.5 million Britons will be flying down to Malaga with easyJet alone while 750'000 are coming to Palma.
British holiday bookings to Spain may well be down on last year, but the country is still Britain's favourite holiday destination with Madrid and Barcelona also featuring in easyJet's top five summer 2005 city break league. Barcelona is in fact the second most popular city break spot attracting 1.1 million British visitors this summer.
Amsterdam, with two million British visitors, is the number one destination and Madrid comes in fifth with half a million.
EasyJet spokesperson Jamie Wortley said “it appears that the old favourites such as Spain and France are still the top summer choices amongst Britons.” Further evidence that the Spain's popularity in Britain is not on the wane comes from the latest report from the Majorcan Hotel federation which claims its members are fully booked this month. Over the next week, Palma's Son San Joan airport is busier than it was during the same period last week handling nearly 20'000 more passengers with the majority from either Britain or Germany.
However, Palma seems to be unable to crack the city break market despite all its efforts and this year's “Palma 365” campaign promoting the fact that the city is allegedly open every day of the year. The Balearic government announced on Thursday that it is going to have another push at promoting off-season tourism next year in a number of key European markets but Palma is going to find it hard to beat the likes of Prague and Geneva.


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