Many of you are still thinking of buying to let, so after a tumultuous year for the travel industry, where are the places to watch? Tom Lei of alphaholidaylettings.com looks at the latest trends...
Top ten destinations 2012
2011 was a challenging year for the whole travel and hospitality industry, affected by the economic downturn in Europe and instability in popular holiday destinations such as Egypt and Tunisia. Some argue that holiday home owners could benefit from tough times like this as going self-catering could save a typical family of four hundreds of pounds. Based on figures from 2011 and this year's bookings so far on AlphaHolidayLettings.com, we have come up with our top 10 holiday rental destinations for 2012.
There are very subtle changes in the 2012 rankings. Last year's top three - Spain, France and Portugal – long-time favourites of the Brits, continue to dominate our Top 10. These well-established destinations have in common that they are both fully-geared for different types of holiday makers; and also served by budget airlines direct from UK regional airports. The relatively short flight times also help ensuring that these destinations, in particular the Costas and the Algarve, will remain popular. Finally, there is a wide ranging inventory of property to choose from.
Cyprus and Turkey have been hits in the last few years but we predict that these countries will climb up the rankings in 2012, when many travellers are looking for something slightly different and are attracted by the warm climates and value-for-money. Paphos region in Cyprus (especially quieter locations such as Peyia, Pissouri, Secret Valley and Aphrodite Hills); and the Turkish Turquoise Coast are the places to watch.
This year, Majorca has just dropped out of the top 10 and is replaced by Tenerife. The Balearics and the Canaries have been sliding down the list ever so slightly. Turkey. Others that just missed the top 10 are USA (top destination Florida), Egypt (Sharm-el-Sheikh) and Bulgaria (Sunny Beach)
Top beach: Costa Del Sol
The Costa Del Sol has long been a popular summer holiday destination, and the strip from Marbella /Puerto Banus to Estepona is the hotspot. These resorts are very family-friendly and there is a huge variety of holiday rentals on offer – with average occupancy 27 weeks per year.
Two or three bedroom properties close to the beach, bars & restaurants and golf courses do best.
Properties specifically targeting golfers do very well because of the good championship courses in this area. Whilst it is advantageous for apartments to have access to a shared swimming pool, villas with a private pool have the edge. A good two-bedroom apartment close to the beach could command up to £900 per week during July and August.
Top ski: Three Valleys
Located on the French Alps, the Three Valleys region is one of the largest ski areas in the world. Brit-favourite Meribel and the upmarket Courchevel are two of the more popular resorts here, along with Val Thorens and La Tania.
Chalets with two to three bedrooms are most in demand. The ski season starts from early December and continues right through to early May - 33 weeks is average occupancy per year. A three-bedroom chalet that sleeps up to 8 people is expected to achieve up to £2500 per week in peak months.
Top city: Dubai
You might not consider Dubai as a typical city break destination, yet the mix of ultra modern urban lifestyle, traditional Arab influence and sandy beaches has sent Dubai to the top of our list.
One/two bedroom apartments at Dubai Marina and The Palm Jumeirah island are the most popular: they're well connected with the old town, new shopping malls and also the airport via the metro tram system.
Although Dubai is an all-year-round destination, high season runs from September to May, and 33 weeks per year is average occupancy There is also demand from business travellers for smaller apartments all year round. A typical two-bedroom apartment at Dubai Marina is expected to get up to £1,000 per week at peak season. Access to on-site communal swimming pool, gym, etc, will be expected by your guests, as will air-con and cable TV.