Cancun in Mexico tops list, offering ideal combination of great weather, desirability and value for money. Gran Canaria takes second place, scoring highly for low-cost flights. Bangkok in Thailand completes the top three, with sizzling average high temperatures of more than 32°C
New research from Forbes Advisor has revealed the ultimate winter sun hotspots for Brits seeking a last minute escape from the UK’s wind, rain and plummeting temperatures.
Cancun, Mexico, has been named the ultimate winter sun hotspot for the best combination of winter sun, desirability and value. The popular Mexico holiday destination offers guaranteed warm weather with average maximum temperatures sitting at 28.82°C between November and February. It also provides visitors with reasonably priced accommodation, with a seven night stay at a hotel costing as little as £63.
Flights to Cancun are the seventh cheapest in the top 20 entries, at an average of £622 for a return from London. Additionally, the research found that Mexico is the UK’s most Googled country when it comes to holiday-related searches, attracting an average of 54,300 searches each month. As a result, the city on the Yucatan peninsula offers the perfect combination of factors for an ideal winter getaway.
The Spanish island of Gran Canaria comes in second, with average flight costs among the lowest in the entire list, at £77.26 for a return. It also scores highly for desirability, with an average of 23,700 holiday-related searches each month. Although average hotel costs are slightly higher than others in our top 20 (£248 for seven nights), it offers welcoming warm temperatures, with an average high of 22.54°C recorded during the winter months.
In third place is Bangkok, Thailand, where seven nights in a hotel can cost as little as £59, and the average high temperature is 32°C. While return flights are more on the expensive side (averaging £787 for a return), the luxurious hotels, vibrant culture and great weather, make Thailand a popular getaway for Brits. Thailand ranks as the third most googled country in the list, receiving 26,850 holiday-related searches each month.
Bali in Indonesia places fourth overall. The popular island offers 12.5 hours of daylight in the four winter months – the highest in the top 20. Alongside this, maximum temperatures settle at an average balmy 31°C and the lowest cost of a seven-night hotel stay is £61. Bali is the second most Googled city among Brits searching for the winter holiday destinations listed, with 34,900 searches each month. The cost of flights is more pricey at £959 for a return from London – the fourth-highest in the study. But with idyllic views, stunning hotels and low cost meals, Bali is definitely worth considering for a winter getaway.
In fifth place is Veracruz, which sits on the Gulf of Mexico coast. Its average flight (£946 return from London) and hotel costs (£95 for seven nights) are higher than Cancun. However the destination offers comfortably warm average high temperatures of 27°C.
The top 10 is rounded out by Krabi in Thailand in sixth, Sharm El Sheikh in Egypt in seventh, Spain’s Lanzarote in eighth, Hat Yai in Thailand in ninth, and tenth spot goes to another Canary Island, Fuerteventura.
Commenting on the ranking, Laura Howard from Forbes Advisor said: “As the nights draw in and UK temperatures plummet, most of us can only dream of jetting off overseas for some winter sun. But even those lucky households who have both the means and the opportunity will want to squeeze maximum value for money from their trip this year as day-to-day costs, from food to energy bills, continue to soar.
“In terms of winter sun getaways, it’s little surprise that Mexico’s Cancun takes the top spot. While it’s an 11-hour flight from the UK, accommodation costs are very reasonable once you arrive, while temperatures, which range between 20 and 28 degrees during the winter months, are perfect for many.
“Larger families – with more flights to pay for – may want to opt for equally popular destinations such as Gran Canaria and Lanzarote which carry much cheaper average airfares than further flung winter hotspots. While temperatures are slightly lower for these destinations, they still rank second and eighth on our list respectively, and can offer the perfect boost to carry you through the rest of the winter months back in the UK.
“Whichever destination you opt for, buying travel insurance at the time of booking will ensure you’re not left out of pocket should you need to cancel your trip due to unforeseen events or you or another member of your party requires medical treatment while away. Cover also includes lost or stolen luggage and delays and cancellations.”
The study was conducted by Forbes Advisor, whose editorial team boasts decades of experience in the personal finance space. It is passionate about helping consumers make the financial decisions and choose the financial products that are right for their life and goals.
The team brings rich industry knowledge to Forbes Advisor’s coverage of consumer credit, debt, banking, investing, insurance, loans, property and travel. Its priority is ensuring its coverage, reviews and guidance is backed by research, deep expertise and strict methodologies.
The top 10 ultimate winter sun hotspots
|#||Destination||Country||Av return flight cost||Av hotel cost for 7 nights||UK av monthly searches for country||UK av monthly searches for destination||Av Min Temp – Nov-Feb||Av Max Temp – Nov-Feb||Av Daylight hours – Nov-Feb||Weighted Score out of 100|
|7||Sharm El Sheikh||Egypt||£168.50||£138.83||26,000||7,500||14.09||22.66||10.66||55.32|