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IN THE NEWS

All-inclusive holidays are on the rise

Telegraph & Argus
5 May 2010

All-inclusive holidays are taking a rising share of both short and long-haul summer holidays for 2010 as families struggle to avoid their travel costs soaring because of the weak pound.

With the prospect of a hung Parliament threatening further confusion on the money markets, all-inclusive holidays reduce the exposure of UK travellers to sudden volatility in their spending power while they are abroad.

Online travel agent directline holidays says sales of all-inclusive breaks have jumped 59 per cent. The firm said the biggest increases were in Mexico (280 per cent), Turkey (139 per cent) and Malta (125 per cent). Spain is up 102 per cent, and Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt, by 94 per cent.

Maria Whiteman, directline chief executive, says: "The current economic climate has made the British public more price-conscious and all-inclusives allow people to budget effectively."

Current directline all-inclusive deals include seven nights in a three-star hotel in Bugibba, Malta, from July 10 from £417, and seven nights at the four-star hotel in Cancun from August 24 from £868.

Tailor-made tour operator and retailer Travelmood has launched its first all-inclusive brochure.

It says the move follows big falls in the spending power of the pound between November 2009 and March 2010 by almost 12 per cent in Sri Lanka, 18.5 per cent in Costa Rica and just over 15 per cent in Bali.

Long-haul specialist Hayes & Jarvis says resorts in the Indian Ocean and Kenya have both seen a surge in all-inclusive holidays of more than 200 per cent in the past year – with prices from £599 for five nights at the four-star Jaz Belvedere in Sharm El Sheikh.

The Hayes & Jarvis All-Inclusive 2010/11 Collection – for travel until September 11 – covers the Caribbean, Kenya, Mauritius, Sri Lanka and Egypt, with 21 additional resorts added.

New entrants include the three-star Coco Reef Resort in Tobago from £1,739 for seven nights, and the five-star Occidental Grand Punta Cana Resort in the Dominican Republic from £969 for seven nights.

Earlier this year, Austravel announced all-inclusives to Australia with ten-night Sydney and the Reef trips from £1,595 until the end of May.

In Florida, operators are adding dining packages to keep holiday costs down for families. For instance Travel City Direct offers savings of up to £1,260 per family with free dining at Walt Disney World for customers booking selected Disney holidays.

The same operator is discounting the cost of Disney Ultimate Tickets for bookings until November 1 on all 2011 holidays.