Thousands of determined Bairns have put the winter blues behind them by booking their summer holidays months in advance.
As wind and rain battered the country over the festive period, travel agents have been ‘flooded’ with requests from local families to find them their ideal place in the sun this July.
January is traditionally one of the busiest times of the year for tour operators, but with special deals and low deposits on offer right now, the demand to find the best hotel in the best resort at the best price during the Falkirk Fair has caught even the experts by surprise.
The cost of Christmas – and even the temptation of bargains in the annual sales – has not stopped them making it a priority to have the cash to organise their fortnight abroad.
Richard Bremner, the boss of Barrhead Travel in Falkirk High Street, said: “As we expected at this time of the year we handled lots of last minute requests from people wanting to spend Christmas or New Year – or both – away from the weather at home.
“Basically, everyone was looking to get to anywhere the sun was shining with Spain and the Canary Islands once again a big favourite.
“But we have also been dealing with more and more clients looking to forget about the winter here and now that Christmas and New Year is out of the way have something to look forward to in the summer. It’s been crazy, but we’ve been delighted to help.
“As well as Spain and its islands, there has been a lot of interest in cruising. Flying further afield to destinations in America and Caribbean have also been very popular.”
It certainly looks as if Falkirk folk have taken the ‘early bird’ theory to heart.
Janey Oliphant, manager of the Thomas Cook branch in the town, admitted: “Business for this time of the year has been massive.
“We were able to accommodate a number of late bookings over the festive period, but regarding summer holidays we’re finding the trend nowadays is to book early.
“People are more forward thinking in their planning and taking advantage of low deposits to have the pick of the best deals when it comes to resorts and hotels. Holidaymakers who may have been disappointed before are getting in early this year.”