Credit crunch ‘puts sun spots in the shade’

PEOPLE in recent times have been forced to tighten their belts and one area in particular is splashing out on overseas holidays, writes Aaron Dunlop.

The Ballymoney Times visited McCurdy Hamilton Travel Agents on Main Street, Ballymoney, and it appears the traditional two weeks in the sun is being substituted for breaks closer to home.

A spokesperson said: “A lot more people are taking holidays in the UK to places like Jersey, Blackpool and various other destinations in England, Scotland, Wales and even bus tours to the Republic.”

They went on to say that the credit crunch wasn’t effecting people taking holidays but that it was mainly preventing them from taking holidays abroad due to the main fact that they can be expensive.

Although in saying this there are a few cheaper destinations abroad that people have booked to go on holiday.

The spokesperson added: “Due to the credit crunch people maybe just can’t afford to go to the more expensive holiday destinations but in saying that the Spanish Islands like Majorca, the Costa del Sol and the Canary Islands still seem to be popular with people this year.”

People are still going on holidays but the length of time is reducing.

The McCurdy Hamilton spokesperson said: “Some people who have booked their holidays are maybe only booking to go away for three or four days at a time and some people have even decided to book two shorter stays away at different times of the summer rather than spend a lot of money on one big holiday.”

So does this affect travel agents?

The spokesperson said: “The credit crunch hasn’t really affected us here which is funny because with the credit crunch and everything you expect holiday numbers to be down, but in fact our holiday sales are up.”