Parks group says “experiences” help land no-fly guests

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FIRST-TIME “staycation” guests are more likely to choose a holiday park if it offers a speciality experience, rather than just an alternative to a rented cottage or hotel.

That’s the finding of the Best of British ((BoB) consortium which recently surveyed members on what is most likely to prompt bookings from families shunning overseas holidays.

As well as more predictable come-ons, such as a nearby surfing school or electric bike hire, some parks won custom from attractions as diverse as fossil-hunting and geo-tagging.

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Other families leaving their passports at home, perhaps for the first time in years, are lured by glamping stays, motorhome hire, or parks offering plenty to occupy youngsters.

In contrast, adults-only parks – around 20% of BoB’s 55-strong membership – reported that child-free surroundings held the greatest sway with their staycationers.

Consortium chairman Richard Legg believes that although location remains the most important decider for many families staying in Britain, “experience” runs a close second:

“Parks which can demonstrate added value have a clear competitive edge over providers which simply offer one form or another of holiday accommodation,” he said.

“This chimes especially with people who are rejecting foreign destinations, but who want a reassurance that their UK stay will provide some equally compelling memories.

“That’s why many of our marketing initiatives this year are challenging families to make their holidays truly unforgettable with a Best of British park as their base,” said Richard.

Richard’s own business, family-owned Hidden Valley Park near Ilfracombe in Devon, promotes a menu of activities including nearby horse riding, quad-biking and water sports.

Using the collective power of consortium marketing, says Richard, BoB members can achieve a far higher national profile for their businesses than a go-it-alone approach.

New parks from Scotland, Wales and England have joined the group this year, all independently owned and verified as meeting the high quality standards required of membership.

More details about the Best of British and its members can be found at  www.Bob.org.uk.

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