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Cheap travel and holiday times – and forget school hols

August 3, 2017 Headline News No Comments Email Email

While state governments actively discourage parents taking their children out of school in term time to go on holiday, new research indicates that 70% of parents defiantly approve of the idea.

A survey by HotelsCombined, which claims the title of Australia’s largest hotel price aggregator, reveals that 70% of Aussie parents would take their kids out of school for family holidays; and more than two in three say it’s okay for kids to miss up to two weeks of school for travel.

It’s no secret that school holiday time, when everyone is on the move, is not the cheapest time to travel or take a holiday. Hotel bookings data reveals August – not July – is the best month for mid-year holidays, when crowds and prices are down.

Price data from HotelsCombined reveals the pricing of retreat accommodation fluctuates by up to 20% throughout the year.

HotelsCombined’s ranking of booking volumes and average prices for retreats

August and September are the cheapest months for retreats, and could have clients chilling with even more in their back pocket than if they had travelled in July.

The data shows a significant drop in room rates for retreats in August and September, with the lowest average room rate per night recorded as being AUD 173.86.

Average rate per night for retreat accommodation drops from AUD 196.44 in July to AUD 184.15 in August. Prices drop by a further AUD 10.29 – on average – in September, to an average of AUD 173.86 and start to increase from October, jumping to an average rate of AUD 201 per night. Prices are still high in November, at AUD 199, before dropping again in December and January again to an average rate of AUD 162 per night.

According to booking data from the platform, July is the most popular month for retreat-type escapes – this includes all accommodation classified as being a retreat. In fact, 33% of bookings made by Australians to domestic and international retreats through HotelsCombined were made in July, January and February.

Year after year, July has been one of the busiest months of the year to travel. Outside of retreats, it is the most popular month of year for chalet bookings (12% of chalet bookings made by Australians across the year through HotelsCombined) and campsite bookings (10%), and the second most popular booking month for resorts and motels after January, (at 9% and 10% of total year’s bookings for resorts and motels respectively).

Unsurprisingly, the data also revealed that November and December are when Australians are least likely to go on retreats, given the busy end-of-year periods. January is the month we are most likely to go on a retreat, with this month receiving the highest number of bookings by Aussie travellers; it is also an affordable time to do so.

In other findings, 53.2% of Aussies believe their holidays are getting longer and less frequent. Similarly, recent research reveals more than half of Australian workers have failed to use up all the entitled leave in the past 12 months.

Given Australians overspent by more than AUD 900 million on international travel last year, and Australian millennials and baby boomers spend an estimated AUD 11.3 billion and AUD 9.8 billion respectively on overseas travel per year, it makes sense to select more affordable months of the year to travel.

“With the end of the financial year being one of the most stressful periods of the year, it’s no wonder Aussies are choosing to opt for a mid-year getaway, making July a peak holiday period,” says Chris Rivett, head of marketing at HotelsCombined Australia and New Zealand.

“With their peaceful settings, relaxing pace, and healthy meal and exercise offerings, it’s no wonder retreats are regarded as the perfect antidote to our overworked culture. If you can hold out a month longer, retreats tend to be quieter in August, making it easier for travellers to recharge and providing a more affordable option.”

Edited by Peter Needham

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