“We notice that much more is being booked than in other years,” says Bert van Duuren, the owner of Chalet.nl, which rents out chalets and apartments in ski areas in France, Austria, Switzerland and Italy.
There are also many postponed trips, from consumers who had already booked, but who have been forced to postpone the holiday due to corona, he says. But according to Van Duuren, there is also a question of catching up on vacations. “If you go out with friends once every few years, this is the year to go,” he says.
‘People want to go on holiday’
“The need to be able to travel again is very great,” says Van Duuren. The question is whether there will be restrictions on après ski, but consumers want it so much that for many of them that is not even the most important thing, they are already happy to be able to ski.”
The majority of Chalet.nl’s customers come from the Netherlands and Belgium.
Van Duuren does not want to say exactly how much more has been booked. He maintains that in the market as a whole, 20 percent more has now been booked for Christmas and the coming winter sports season than was the case for corona, “and with us the increase is even more.”
‘Booked a lot and also much earlier’
Baptiste van Outryve, spokesperson for Roompot (which rents out houses in 125 holiday parks in the Netherlands and another 64 in France, Germany, Belgium and Spain) also says that bookings are higher than last year.
He does not want to give a specific figure for competitive reasons, but he says that the number of bookings for Christmas and winter is already a percentage of two figures higher than before corona.
In any case, bookings are being made earlier and earlier, according to Van Outryve. This is now even four months earlier than normal for the summer holidays and two months for other holidays.
He expects Roompot to reach an occupancy rate of 100 percent before the Christmas holidays. In recent weeks, he says, consumers have booked a lot and also much earlier than was previously the case.
‘Limited bookings outside Europe’
However, not every organization notices that more and earlier bookings are made. TUI, for example, sees that holidaymakers make last minute reservations.
“That happens much more than before, that is logical, they want more insight into measures and travel restrictions,” says spokesperson Petra Kok. Moreover, we now call a booking last minute if it is booked three weeks before departure, previously it was five weeks before departure, she says.
Still limited to outside Europe
“We do see bookings for Christmas, such as to Curaçao and the Canary Islands, but outside Europe the offer is still very limited. That also has to do with the travel advice.”
Booking.com, where you can mainly book hotels, does not want to say anything about whether more or earlier bookings are made. That has to do with the fact that it is part of the US-listed Booking Holdings, says a spokesperson.