Although a YouGov poll published shortly after the New Year revealed that 80 per cent of the public supported a third full national lockdown prior to national restrictions re-entering force, there remain healthy numbers of the public that have not yet abandoned hope of a winter skiing getaway.
At least, that is according to the latest pulse survey issued by The Ski Club of Great Britain, which sought to gather knowledge of consumer intentions over the remainder of the ski season and their thoughts ahead of the 2021-22 winter period.
The poll was issued in early January following the introduction of the third lockdown and followed similar polls that were carried out in December, September and August of 2020, to help gauge how consumer intentions have changed as Covid restrictions have tightened.
The January 2021 survey found that 49 per cent of over 5,000 individuals surveyed still plan on going skiing this winter if they are able to travel. Out of 32 per cent who said they did not have an intention of going skiing this winter, 80 per cent stated that they were likely to try to travel next season, which is a five per cent increase on the 75 per cent who said they still planned to travel in the 2021-22 season in December's poll.
Out of the 49 per cent who still plan on travelling this year - which is a ten per cent reduction on the poll put to consumers in December - 64 per cent of them are yet to book their holiday.
Among 19 per cent of recorded respondents who stated that they were ‘not sure’ about going skiing this season, they noted that ‘being vaccinated’ against Covid-19 was their highest priority in ensuring they can travel, followed closely by ‘low infection rates in the country I want to visit’.
The survey also discovered that 54 per cent of consumers remain keen to travel this March, while 28 per cent of consumers now say they plan to travel in April this year, compared to 12 per cent in December. Those planning to travel over March and April are also yet to book their trips.
36 per cent of consumers have claimed that they plan to leave booking their holidays until the week before they travel, up from 27 per cent in December. 48 per cent have stated that they plan to book two to four weeks before travelling, compared to 53 per cent recorded last month.
The survey also looked into the methods of travel and the types of accommodation consumers plan to book. In terms of travel, 69 per cent are planning to fly, 21 per cent intend to travel via the Eurotunnel, while seven per cent will go via ferry. 45 per cent of consumers have informed the Ski Club that they are planning to change their way of travelling because of Covid-19.
As for types of accommodation, 44 per cent noted that they will stay in a hotel, with 22 per cent intending to stay in an apartment and 18 per cent in a chalet. 22 per cent of consumers claimed that they have deviated from their typical accommodation plans as a result of Covid.
51 per cent of consumers that intend to travel said that they are likely to book their own travel, transfer and accommodation, compared to 48 per cent who plan to book with a travel agent or tour operator.
The Ski Club’s next pulse survey will be conducted near the beginning of the 2021-22 winter ski season to understand how Covid-19 has affected consumer confidence further.
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