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Adventurous Brits and their pets carry on camping as sector continues to grow

May 28 2013 Posted by Samantha Marsh

Dogs really are man’s best friend as 13% of holidaymakers, booking via Pitchup.com, are opting to take their furry friends away with them this summer.

Latest figures from the outdoor holiday specialist Pitchup.com show a 50% increase in the proportion of holidaymakers wanting to take their pets on holiday so far in 2013 compared with last year.  Dan Yates, founder of Pitchup.com says: “There is a marked growth in our customers searching for and booking camping and caravanning sites that accept pets.  It’s not really surprising given that figures from the Pet Food Manufacturers Association show that 23% of UK households own at least one dog.  It’s great news for our owners though.  There are 403 bookable sites* on our website that welcome pets so there is no shortage of places for people to choose between.“

Another popular search on Pitchup.com is for sites rated highly by users. Indeed Yates comments that user rating seems to be more important than official rating, with a 27% higher correlation with bookings: "Visitors to our website place a great deal of trust in our previous users and we’ve noticed a major shift in people moving away from the traditional official ratings towards recommendations and ratings from other holidaymakers.  Currently there are 40% more bookings for sites with user ratings than for sites with official ratings. This type of search is also of great benefit for our owners as even the smallest sites with minimal facilities can still achieve a 10 out of 10 user rating, providing they offer the best possible experience within their capabilities.”

Other key findings to come out of Pitchup.com’s statistics are:

  • Cornwall is leading the choice of destinations, up 514% on 2012
  • Its neighbour Devon is the fastest growing destination, growing 117% faster than average in 2012-13
  • Cambridgeshire is the least popular place for an outdoor break, with bookings 50% lower in 2013.  Similarly Derbyshire has also reduced in popularity from 2012 to 2013 by 75% compared to other destinations
  • Comfort while on holiday is popular for 2013 with seven out of 10 touring/camping pitches are booked with an electric hook up
  • Customers are spending 7% more on their holidays in 2013, showing that visitors are upgrading their holiday and looking for better quality accommodation

Carolyn Custerson, Chair, Visit Devon said "Devon offers fantastic holidays everyone – and is an absolute playground for dogs. With nine stunning Blue Flag beaches, and spectacular coastal and inland walks, there's something for all to enjoy. Devon's popularity is growing due the high quality holiday venues, award winning campsites and superb choice of things to see and do.” 

The UK holiday market took a hit last year when the weather caused a complete wash out, but thanks to some great spring weather since Easter, the bookings are starting to flood in thanks to a few sunny weekends of late.

Pitchup.com’s most popular site for 2013 is Lady’s Mile Holiday Park in Dawlish, Devon. The site is ideal for families as it offers a vast array of facilities including indoor and outdoor pools, restaurant, bar, play area, fitness centre and regular evening entertainment. There is also a food shop and take-away on-site.  Furthermore Lady’s Mile is just moments from the blue flag beaches of Dawlish Warren. 

Pitchup.com features a range of traditional camping and caravanning sites right through to really eccentric styles of accommodation including a converted railway carriage. The beauty of booking via Pitchup.com is that all types of sites, large and small, are found in one convenient place where bookings can be made online and paid for by credit/debit card or via PayPal.

For more information visit www.pitchup.com.

ends

 All data based on bookings made between 1st January 2013 and 15th May 2013, versus the same period in 2012

* http://www.pitchup.com/campsites/-/dogs-allowed/

Media information:

Cass Helstrip or Samantha Marsh at White Tiger PR

Cass.helstrip@whitetigerpr.com 07968 255464

Samantha.marsh@whitetigerpr.com 07711 265666 

Notes to editors

Founded in 2009 by former lastminute.com man, Dan Yates, multi-award winning Pitchup.com is a free guide to all types of camping and caravanning in the UKIreland and France. The site provides users with a simple platform in which they can search and book a camping or caravanning holiday with total ease. The customer experience from landing on the home page through to booking a holiday can be completed in as little as four pages. The site also goes beyond traditional searches by allowing users to search for a site based on more than 80 criteria, such as adults only and campfires allowed, and view nearby events, Good Pub Guide pubs and VisitBritain attractions. Users can also search on the offers page to find the best deals available. Pitchup.com features over 5,000 UK wide camping and caravanning sites/parks with France recently added into the equation. It enables users to search for all types of parks and sites from the major brands right through to one off campsites which may not have previously had a web presence.