How do you choose your next destination?

Have you booked your holiday? How did you decide where you were going? Did you spend hours thumbing through Instagram, checking out your friends’ pictures of sun-kissed legs set against the backdrop of an azure sea, or envying those influencers lounging by an infinity pool? Maybe you read an article about the latest holiday hotspot in one of the Sunday supplements? Or perhaps you’re returning to the same place you went to last year. After all, you had a great time, so why wouldn’t you want to return?

Here at Villa Plus, we wanted to find out the greatest influences when looking for our next holiday destinations. So, we surveyed 1,000 British adults to find out.

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Instagram influence

One in five of us let our thumbs do the talking when we’re looking for our next holiday.

Scrolling through social media sure does make us feel envious, or shall we say, provides inspiration. Whether it’s travel bloggers in far-flung places or friends messing around pools in the grounds of gorgeous villas, social media certainly gives us lots of ideas when we’re looking for our next holiday destination.

And it’s women who are more influenced by social media than men. In fact, they’re three times more likely than men to choose a holiday based on something they’ve seen on social media. And 10% more likely to choose a holiday destination because they deem it to be “Instagram worthy”.

Finding that Instagrammable location is especially a priority for Geordies, with nearly a fifth of them stating it’s an important factor when choosing a holiday destination.

After all, what’s the point of going on holiday if you can’t make your friends jealous?!

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Keeping it in the family

Despite the rising influence of social media, recommendations from friends and family remain the top factor when we’re looking for holiday inspiration, with over a third of Brits saying that they’re more likely to book a holiday at a location that their friends or family have stayed at and enjoyed.

Bagging a bargain

Us Brits love a bargain and finding a cheap deal certainly remains a factor when we’re looking for a holiday, particularly for men, who are nearly four times more likely to pick a holiday destination because of a special offer or because it has been reduced in price. Liverpudlians are particularly keen on a deal, with 42% stating that it would influence where they decide to go on holiday.

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Sticking to tradition

A good few of us are repeat tourists – 10% of Brits like to return to a holiday destination they’ve enjoyed before. After all, if it ain’t broke, then don’t fix it! Men (20%) are nearly twice as likely as women (11%) to choose a holiday because they’ve been there before. This also tends to be true of older holiday makers, with more than a quarter of 55-64-year-olds (25.3%) returning to a favourite destination, compared to only 11% of 18-24-year-olds. As for around the UK, a quarter of Sheffield-based folks stated that the last holiday they booked was a return visit to a place they had stayed at before.

Chasing the sun

So, what other factors influence us when we’re looking for a holiday? Just over 23% of people from Edinburgh revealed they get holiday inspiration from newspaper and magazine articles, whereas 50% of Scousers list finding a holiday destination not too far from home as a top factor. After all, not everyone wants to waste days of their work holiday allowance travelling to their destination. Obviously, the weather is a big consideration for many of us, especially for Sheffield holiday makers, with over 62% of them stating that it was a major factor in their decision-making process.

Getting it booked

When it comes to booking, the majority of us (34%) prefer to book a holiday directly with the service provider, for example, booking villas with a dedicated villa holiday company. Surprisingly, only 8% of Brits use home-sharing or owner-letting sites, like Airbnb, to book their holidays. Perhaps we’re still disposed to trusting more established companies rather than individuals when it comes to such important decisions. Interestingly, over one in ten Brits booked their last holiday destination directly through social media.

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It’s clear that social media is becoming more and more influential to people’s holidaying habits, but can anything really match a recommendation from a friend or family member?  After all, it’s the job of influencers and travel bloggers to make their pictures look amazing, so how can you really be sure that a place is as Instagrammable as it looks? When it comes to family and friends, they’re more likely to give you the warts-and-all report of a destination, which might be why their recommendations influence our holiday decisions more than social media.

No matter how you found your holiday whether it was through your Instagram feed, by following a friend’s recommendation or returning to a tried-and-tested location – we’re sure you’ll have an amazing time. Bonnes vacances!

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