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2022 set to be a bumper year for travel with half of Brits already planning a holiday abroad, over £40 billion to be spent

October 20, 2021
  • New data from American Express has revealed that half of Brits are planning a trip abroad next year and 20% of Brits have already started booking.
  • Respondents are expecting their holiday to cost £1,567 on average, with a fifth (21%) planning to spend £2,000 or more. £41.2 billion is planned to be spent on international trips next year.
  • Two fifths (44%) of Brits are planning to go on holiday both in the UK and abroad.

20 October, 2021 – 2022 is set to be a bumper year for travel, as half of Brits are eagerly reaching for their passports and already planning a trip abroad next year, according to new research(1)  from American Express (NYSE: AXP). 

The main reason booking their travel in advance was that they miss travelling internationally (32%), while 21% of Brits are celebrating occasions they weren’t able to because of the pandemic. 16% are doing so because they want to take advantage of airline and accommodation offers.

For those Brits taking a more cautious approach and putting off booking for now, the main reason given is to wait and see how the pandemic progresses (55%), while a third (33%) are waiting for restrictions to ease, and 30% feel it is too far away to book. 

The research also revealed that nearly a quarter (24%) of those surveyed have not left the UK at all during the pandemic.


June and July are the months people have their heart set on going abroad next year (19% and 18% respectively). Spain tops the destination list with a fifth (21%) planning a trip there, followed by Greece (14%), France (13%) and Italy (13%). Some have set their sights further afield, with 6% looking to go to the Caribbean and 4% wanting to head to China.


% of Brits planning a trip there 



















Sun, sea & spend 

Respondents are expecting their holiday to on average set them back £1,567, with a fifth (21%)

planning to spend £2,000 or more. Over a quarter (27%) are planning to spend more this year than on their holiday last year. Half of those (48%) say they are spending more because they have missed travelling abroad, while 29% want to treat themselves. In total £41.2 billion is planned to be spent on international trips next year. 

American Express provides the following top tips for Brits booking a holiday abroad:

  1. Cash in your points – American Express Membership Rewards points can be collected through a number of American Express Cards and can be spent on a host of travel experiences, including the ability to transfer points to 12 airline partners’ loyalty programmes to spend on flights and more. As an example, the American Express Preferred Rewards Gold Credit Card earns 1 Membership Rewards point for every £1 spent and is currently offering an enhanced Welcome Bonus for new Cardmembers.(2)

  2. Flexibility is your friend – Although travel is increasingly opening up, it is always good to look for a holiday which will allow you to change dates or cancel the booking free of charge, as the pandemic has taught us things can change quickly!

  3. Earn Companion Vouchers – Use a British Airways American Express Credit Card or British Airways Premium Plus Card to earn Companion Vouchers.(4) These vouchers enable Cardmembers to receive a second seat for a friend or family member for no extra Avios, on the same flight and in the same cabin, when booking the initial reward seat using Avios. These have recently been made quicker to earn and easier to redeem, more information is here.

  4. Check your passport – Many Brits’ passports will have been collecting dust over the pandemic, so make sure to check the expiry date before you book as many countries require your passport is valid for at least six months from arrival.

Looking closer to home?

For those planning a holiday in the UK, a third (34%) say this is because they are more comfortable having a holiday in the UK given the pandemic, while the same proportion enjoyed a holiday in the UK in 2021 and would like to again. Cornwall (11%) and Wales (10%) are toping the UK destination list for holidays next year, but a quarter (25%) are undecided.



  1. A nationally representative 2,001 UK adults aged 18+ was conducted by Opinium between 5th and 8th October 2021. 
  2. Terms and conditions apply – see here. The American Express Preferred Rewards Gold Credit Card has a representative APR of 59.9% variable. The Welcome Bonus offer ends 9 November, 2021.
  3. Terms and conditions apply – see here and here. The British Airways American Express Credit Card representative APR for Cardmembers is 24.5% variable, and for British Airways American Express Premium Plus Cardmembers it is 101.1% variable.



Nick Richardson

+44 (0)7580 849 673


Emily Hutchinson

+44 (0)7880 757390




Jack Calway



American Express is a globally integrated payments company, providing customers with access to products, insights and experiences that enrich lives and build business success.  Learn more at americanexpress.com and connect with us on facebook.com/americanexpress, instagram.com/americanexpress, linkedin.com/company/american-express, twitter.com/americanexpress, and youtube.com/americanexpress.

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Source: American Express Company

Location: U.K. 

American Express Services Europe Limited has its registered office at Belgrave House, 76 Buckingham Palace Road, London, SW1W 9AX, United Kingdom. It is registered in England and Wales with Company Number 1833139 and authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

Source: American Express

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