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Friday, 5 December 2008

‘Wait & See’ travellers miss out on best deals

Australians are continuing to travel despite the economic downturn but they are making bookings at short notice adopting a ‘wait and see’ policy which is seeing them miss out on the best deals and value-adds from wholesalers encouraging early bookings.

Canada wholesale travel companies say they are still taking bookings but instead of the main focus being for mid-2009 departures they are finding that people are booking at much shorter notice than normal.

Sensational Canada director Sue Thorley says that the company has seen a spike in ski holiday bookings for January and February boosted by the huge dumps of snow seen in Canada this week.

“With 21cm of snow overnight those travelers that were holding off in the midst of market uncertainty have now started booking,” Ms Thorley said.

“It’s a much shorter lead time than we normally see but the exchange rate means Canada is still one of the best value destinations for Australians which is making it a popular choice for those planning 2009 holidays.”

But Ed Smith Canada and Alaska Specialist Holidays general manager warns that travelers booking at the last minute risk missing out on the best deals.

“Amazing offers are now in the market for those booking 2009 holidays before the end of February and those waiting to book later may end up paying higher prices for their holiday,” Mr Smith said.

“Canada wholesalers, along with suppliers in Canada, are offering value-added deals which mean cost savings and a fuller experience of Canada and the World Heritage area of Banff and Lake Louise.

“The government’s economic stimulus package has started to bring confidence back to the market and great value packages will continue to be offered in the early New Year months of 2009 for people to take advantage of.”

Canada is reported to be performing well against some other long haul destinations.

“Canada is holding its ground against other overseas holiday destinations and while bookings have suffered since the financial crisis we are expecting a steady increase in weeks to come”, says Adventure World’s Neil Rodgers.

“The top end of the market is showing strength and independent travel continues to grow in popularity.”

Increased demand for summer holidays in Canada has seen Sensational Canada launch its first ever summer holiday offering and Creative Holidays has also increased its range.

Andrew Yell, general manager, product, sales and marketing for Creative Holidays says, “Creative Holidays’ Canada self drive packages have seen an increase in interest in 2008 and to meet this demand we have added four additional self drive packages for 2009.”

“Australians often like diversity in their overseas holiday and accommodation in Banff and Lake Louise caters for this with guests able to stay in a combination of lodges, hotels and cabins in stunning mountain lake locations.”

Travel packages to visit Canada in summer are available from Creative Holidays, Adventure World, Canada & Alaska Specialists and Sensational Canada. For details go to

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