Travelodge survey shows more Brits taking UK city breaks with £51bn spend

As foreign holidays are on hold for many Britons this year and UK British beach holidays are literally sold out, more Britons than ever are turning to a city break for some R&R according to research from the UK’s leading independent hotel brand, Travelodge.

This year, 61% of Britons are taking a ‘Citycation’, more than twice as many as in 2020, when just 27% of British adults took a UK city break. On average, Britons will be taking three UK city breaks this year, with summer the busiest season.

Britons are spending on average £414 on their Citycation, which is £17.08 more than the 2020 city breaks spend of £396.92. Collectively, city break holidaymakers will spend £51 billion exploring UK cities this year, as revealed in the 2021 Travelodge City Holiday Index.

Travelodge surveyed 2,000 British adults to seek their views and plans on UK city breaks, as the hotel chain, which operates 578 hotels across the UK, has seen a significant shift in bookings across its city hotels this summer.

Key findings from the survey revealed that 43% of Britons are opting to take a Citycation due to the easy accessibility a UK city break offers. Nearly a third (31%) of holidaymakers said that the diversity that UK cities offer is most appealing. With many UK cities offering a beach or coastal waterfront such as Brighton, Portsmouth and Liverpool, you really do have the one stop holiday destination on your doorstep.

Around a third (32%) of respondents reported that a UK city break is great value for money this year as many major cities that are not normally accessible due to the large volume of foreign tourists are open to Britons this year. This includes cities such as Bath, Edinburgh, London, Oxford and York.

One in three (30%) Britons surveyed reported that taking a UK city break is a good way to learn about our heritage and history. A third of parents also reported that taking a UK city break has been a good way to keep their children entertained during the summer school holidays.

The report also revealed that 25% of Britons are using a UK city break as a meeting point to catch up with family and friends after being in lockdown mode for over a year. With 69 cities dotted across the length and breadth of the UK, there is a new city to explore on many Britons' door steps. Taking a city break to meet up with family and friends also offers a central meeting location and makes the reunion a lot more fun and special.

The top cities that Britons are visiting this year are all steeped in history and are renowned for their stunning architecture, unique cultural personalities, gastronomic delights and the unique holiday experience they offer. Topping the 2021 Citycation charts is Bath, the beautiful compact city that has been a wellbeing destination since Roman times.

In second place is the ancient gothic Granite City of Aberdeen on the edge of the north east coast of Scotland. The third top city that Britons are visiting this year is the 2,000 year old English capital, London. The city is globally famous for its art, architecture, food, fashion and amazing city skyline views against the River Thames.

Britons' top 20 Citycation destinations:
1. Bath
2. Aberdeen
3. London
4. Birmingham
5. Belfast
6. Brighton
7. Bangor
8. Edinburgh
9. York
10. Liverpool
11. Bristol
12. Cambridge
13. Bradford
14. Cardiff
15. Manchester
16. Canterbury
17. Oxford
18. Newcastle
19. Chester
20. Glasgow

The study also delved deeper and asked Britons to vote for their top 2021 cities for the following categories and the table pictured details the winners for each category:
· The UK’s Most Beautiful Cities
· The UK’s Best Coastal Cities
· The UK’s Best Historic Cities
· The UK’s Top Gastronomic Cities
· The UK’s Top Shopping City

Interestingly the survey also revealed that 87% of British adults are clueless that we currently have 69 cities in the UK. On average, Britons have visited 13 UK cities and the most visited cities are: London, Bath, Birmingham, Manchester, Edinburgh, York, Liverpool, Bristol, Cambridge and Brighton.

Britons new love for a Citycation break has inspired 55% of British adults to start a UK city bucket list so that they can discover some of the UK’s 69 cities. The average list consists of 25 cities waiting to be discovered.

Also, the surveu noted the top ten UK cities to make Britons bucket list. They are: Edinburgh, Bath, Cambridge, York, Aberdeen, Canterbury, Cardiff, Oxford, Brighton, and Liverpool.

Shakila Ahmed, Travelodge's Communication Director, said, “As foreign holidays are on hold for many Britons this year and UK beach holidays are hard to find, our research supported with bookings data shows it’s the summer of 69 cities, as Britons are turning to a Citycation for some R&R.

'This is great news for local economies as collectively Britons are expected to spend around £51 billion exploring UK's great cities this year. With 69 diverse cities dotted across the length and breadth of the UK, there has never been a better time than now to take a Citycation and discover a new city on your doorstep.”