Ice creams, buckets and spades, stripy deck chairs and sticks of rock. That’s right, we all love that British seaside getaway, and apparently our holiday habits haven’t changed much in the last 10 years.

When the recession hit in 2008, it was predicted that many would suffer financially and therefore luxuries like holidays would no longer be as common. However, in data collected by Visit Britain over the past 10 years, holidays to the UK have not dropped as significantly as expected.

In particular, the East of England does not seem to have suffered in terms of tourism, with just over seventy-six million people visiting the area since 2008. This shows that brits are still taking to the good old-fashioned seaside for their summer holidays.

In 2013 and 2014, there appears to be consistent decrease in visits, however things are on the up, due to the fact that in 2015 there were 9.73 million trips to the area. This could mean that 2016 and 2017 will bring more trips to the east.


  • This graph shows amount of trips to the East of England between 2005 and 2015.

The data collected also provides information about the amount of money spent on these trips which calculates to just over eleven and a half billion pounds since 2008. That’s a lot of ice creams and sticks of rock.

In spite of the crisis in 2008, on average, £187.33 was spent on each trip to the East of England that year, a respectable amount considering the dive in the economy at the time. This also isn’t much different to the amount spent in 2014, when the recession was claimed to be ‘almost over’.

  • This chart breaks down the amount of money spent, per trip in each year, since 2005.

When looking into the amount of nights spent in the area, it is clear that it has fluctuated but overall it has decreased over the last 10 years. With 40.2 million nights spent in 2005 and only 28.22 million in 2015. This could suggest that the ‘day tripper’ is becoming more popular and by the look of the pattern emerging, overnight stays could be on the decrease for 2016 and maybe even 2017.

  • This chart shows the amount of nights spent in the East of England, in millions.

So, we are still buying all of our favourite coastal treats and visiting the same beach hotspots that we have done for the last 10 years. But we are now more likely to drive back to our own beds instead of setting up camp on the coastline. This just shows that although it is said that a lot has changed over the years with new technologies and flights abroad, the way we spend our summer holidays has not!