Belfast Telegraph

Travel firms expecting spring windfall between Good Friday and May Day

Tourism bosses are anticipating a bumper period of trade in spring 2017 as holidaymakers take advantage of a pair of bank holiday weekends just two weeks apart.

Many workers in the UK will be able to take an 18-day break by using just nine days of their annual leave allowance between Good Friday on April 14 and the May Day bank holiday on May 1.

This quirk of the 2017 calendar means a number of destinations holding events during that period could see a boost in visitors.

Celebrations to mark the anniversary of William Shakespeare's birthday are taking place in Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire on April 22 and 23, while the six-day Cheltenham Jazz Festival in Gloucestershire begins on April 26.

Scottish whisky lovers can head to Strathspey for the Spirit Of Speyside festival starting on April 27, and cycling fans can cheer on the riders in the Tour de Yorkshire from April 29.

Patricia Yates, director of national tourism agency VisitBritain, said : " Record numbers of Brits have been taking holidays at home this year and we anticipate that this will continue in 2017 due to the certainty of budgeting for a domestic holiday and the sheer diversity of events and attractions on offer.

"The Easter break and May bank holiday weekend are a chance for people to make the most of their annual leave dates and enjoy a great British holiday whether on a seaside, countryside or city break."

Holidaymakers will also be able to take advantage of a favourable time off to annual leave ratio over the 2017 festive period.

With December 23 and 24 falling on a weekend, many workers will be able to enjoy 10 days off between Christmas and New Year by booking just three days off from December 27-29.

Bank and public holidays do not have to be given as paid leave, meaning employers can choose to include them as part of their employees' statutory annual leave allowance of 28 days per year.