2021: South Devon’s tourism bounce back

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2021: South Devon’s tourism bounce back

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With 2020 thankfully behind us, and 2021 now seemingly on the ‘up’ due to the incredible vaccine roll out, and to the government’s four step road map to ease restrictions, for those dependant on the tourism industry in South Devon things are beginning to look a little brighter. Actually, a lot brighter if you take a look at the statistics…

2020 British Travel Award winning holiday letting agency Coast & Country Cottages is based locally, with offices in Salcombe and Dartmouth. With a team of more than 30 knowledgeable people handling all aspects of holiday letting, from property maintenance and changeovers, to marketing and accounts, the agency has over 20 years of experience in the trade – and 2021 is predicted to break all records. 

So, how are bookings looking for 2021? 

Across the board, they are very strong indeed. When comparing the company’s booking figures from February 2020 (prior to the first wave of the pandemic) with the same figures from 2021, occupancy rates for this July and August were already 61% higher. But it isn’t just the high season summer weeks that have been booked at an unprecedented rate. The agency has seen consumer confidence growing for late spring/early summer and in particular for autumn. Bookings for September and October holidays are already 20% over what the agency forecast! Whilst in both 2019 and 2020 Coast & Country Cottages broke its own booking records, for 2021 it is both the volume of bookings and the rate at which they are being confirmed that is particularly impressive. 

What are the reasons for this level of bookings and swift uptake?

Following the uncertainty of the past months, people - whilst desperate for a holiday - are looking to stay closer to home, within the confines of the UK. This seems the safer and less costly option, especially given Covid-19 hasn’t simply disappeared.  International travel now comes with both additional financial and health risks - the potential need for a costly quarantine stay in a hotel for two weeks on return, or the chance of contracting a new strain of Covid-19 to name just two. It is unsurprising that the increase in interest in staycations has doubled in the last year. Google Trends identify that in the 12 months prior to February 2021, searches for ‘staycation ideas’ grew by more than 200% compared to the previous time period.

What does this mean for the travel and tourism industry in South Devon?

Whether you are a holiday home owner, a restaurateur, events manager or from a local attraction, the general picture for later in 2021 and beyond could be a positive one. Not only could 2021 bring visitors who may ordinarily holiday abroad, it is possible it will engage a new generation of ‘repeat customers’… those who until now hadn’t discovered the joys of a holiday in South Devon, but who, once enamoured with this beautiful region and all it has to offer, will choose to return year after year. 

Thinking of letting your holiday home? 

If you are considering letting your holiday home, or thinking of buying a second home in South Devon, now is a great time to invest. With the holiday market as it is, letting your second home in the region in the next few years is sure to guarantee you revenue. However, do consider your letting agent carefully. Choosing the right company will help to ensure your first time visitors become regulars, and that your holiday home has consistent year round bookings long after the Covid-19 trend flattens.

Please call our New Property Consultants Lana Stephens and Rachel Farley on 01803 227990 (option 3) or visit coastandcountry.co.uk to order a copy of our Owners Guide.  

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