OOH LA! LA! BRITISH LURED TO FRENCH PARKS
Holiday park owners in France are training their sights on British holidaymakers in a bid to make up huge revenue losses suffered during recent overseas travel restrictions.
Helping lead the assault is French holiday parks giant Yelloh Village which operates more than 100 parks in its home country, as well as offering hot spots in Spain and Portugal.
The group, based near Nimes, has this month appointed Caravan Sitefinder to take the lead in publicising its holidays to the online booking platform’s million-plus annual visitors. CEO Michael Paul says Yelloh anticipates that mainland Europe will be fully open for business by next spring, and that many UK families will be thirsting for a continental holiday. Caravan Sitefinder, says Michael, will be actively marketing Yelloh’s parks to consumers via its huge database, and through high-profile website promotions. “The British holiday market is massively important to French park operators, and the widescale absence of UK visitors for almost two years is being keenly felt,” said Michael. “But they sense that payback time will be coming shortly and want to claim as large a share as possible of the market by going all out for bookings made this winter and spring.
“This clearly has ramifications for UK park owners as they too are still licking their wounds after so many lockdowns and Covid-related cancellations in recent times. Many will be pinning their hopes on the trend for domestic holidays to continue next year, and I think they have some cause for optimism,” continues Michael.
“A lot of families have been converted to stays in this country after enjoying positive experiences this and last summer and may choose to continue doing so. “But there will inevitably be others who are now looking forward to returning to Mediterranean sunshine, and will be booking with overseas park operators such as Yelloh. So the main priority for most parks will be to seize as many bookings as possible from those intending to stay in the UK, and to do so as early as possible. “In other words, they will have to market themselves far more aggressively than this year, and not rely on travel limitations providing an almost literal captive audience,” said Michael. Yelloh’s parks, located largely on the coast and in popular mountain areas, range from simple touring sites to multi-activity centres with luxury accommodation.