A new study by British Airways Holidays reveals that while Brits are ace at booking trips to sun-soaked holiday destinations around Europe, they’re less clued-up when it comes to finding those places on a map.
For example, Cyprus is one of the most popular destinations for British travellers, but of the 2,000 people polled, 53 per cent have no idea where it is – confusing it most commonly with mainland Greece.
Just under half (49 per cent) of those who booked a holiday in Turkey were unable to identify it on the map, many confusing it with Ukraine (despite it being more than 1,200 miles away). And more than one in 10 of those who went to France found it difficult to locate their chosen destination, with many pinpointing it where Belgium lies.
A similar number who were lucky enough to enjoy the sunny climes of Italy were unsure of their location, most commonly mistaking it for Belarus on the world map.
It also emerged one in five would be hard pushed to name the capital city of the country they visited, while 27 per cent wouldn’t be able to name any of the neighbouring nations.
Claire Bentley spokeswoman for British Airways Holidays, which carried out the research by asking holidaymakers to pinpoint where they went on map of Europe, said: “It is surprising to think that people are prepared to spend their hard earned wages on a holiday, without researching something as important as its location.
“We know that cost and temperature is often the most important factor for adults wanting to book a holiday, but 23% of our respondents admitted they would never think to look at where it is on the map before booking.”
The study indicates that a quarter of people who travelled to Spain last year for their holiday do not know where it is on the map. Respondents selected a variety of other countries on the map rather than settling on Spain itself – with France coming out on top.
Portugal is another destination which leaves Brits baffled – as 31 per cent of adults couldn’t pinpoint its location, opting again for France on the map.
The Netherlands caused concern for 36 per cent of people who holidayed there last year as they also couldn’t find it on the map, choosing Denmark as its home.
France was also the most common destination to be selected in favour of Germany and Greece, which 22 per cent and 29 per cent couldn’t place respectively.
Even Ireland leaves Brits bewildered – an incredible 24 per cent who visited our neighbouring country last year were unable to say where it was in Europe, believing they were in the UK or Spain instead.
Overall, a third of respondents admitted they found it difficult to pinpoint where they went on holiday.
When booking a holiday, the temperature of the country turned out to be the most important factor for 65 per cent of people, closely followed by local attractions (61 per cent).
Accommodation is incredibly important for 52 per cent of people, and a further 48 per cent always look into what the hotel’s facilities are like.
Currency is a concern for 47 per cent of people, while others like to find out about the swimming pools (24 per cent), the nearest beach (34 per cent) and one in 10 Brits like to know where the pubs are.
But four in ten people admit they often travel to a holiday destination knowing little about where they are going – having failed to research cultural differences, where it is on the map, where local hospitals or doctor’s surgeries are, the price of food and drink or places of interest.
Seven in ten people realised they should be more knowledgeable about their holiday destinations in the future.
(Featured image: martinak15)