A rise in Covid-19 cases and new restrictions introduced by the Scottish Government has not put off holiday-goers in Tayside, according to travel agents and local businesses.
Nicola Sturgeon advised Scots this week not to travel overseas during the October school break, and instead treat the holiday as a chance to further limit social interaction.
However, the travel industry in Tayside reports tourists have other plans in mind.
Chloe Dailly, assistant manager at Hays Travel said: “We find that families book up the October holidays well in advance because it takes longer for them to organise trips.”
Currently three foreign destinations offer quarantine-free travel – Turkey, Poland and Cyprus – and bookings for Turkey were extremely popular, Chloe said.
“We had somebody go to Turkey and then back again just two weeks later.
“Things can change, of course. That’s the worry,” she said.
The Scottish Government confirmed yesterday that only one household is now permitted to share self-catering holiday accommodation.
However, caravan sites in Tayside report healthy takings.
Douglas Baillie, owner of the Tayport Links Caravan Park on East Common said demand was unprecedented for this time of year.
He said: “I’ve never known it to be this busy. We are fully booked in September and we are already at 85% capacity for October, which is unheard of.
“We signed up to UK Governments Good To Go scheme which was put in place to signify that businesses were complying with all the cleaning and Covid guidance in place.
“I think having these measures in place has created a good consumer confidence in what we are doing here.
“I’ve also seen an increase in the demand of people wanting to buy caravans on site.”
The Evening Telegraph also spoke with another caravan park which reported similar good fortune.
Douglas added: “There might have been some concerns for the industry about people being scared to travel but it hasn’t been the case for our caravan park.
“Even with the latest set of changes that have been implemented we’ve seen no impact on our bookings.
“We’d expect those staying on site to be complying with the latest laws in place whilst they were staying here.”
However, Chris Peachey, co-owner of Aabalree Guest House on Union Street, said there had been a downturn in trade and a change in guest trends in recent months.
He added: “At this time of year we would expect to be at about 90% capacity but with the decline of tourism we’ve been around half of that.
“Luckily, our city attracts new workers and student year round, and after utilising the lockdown to make further improvements to the converted tenement, we’re finding more of these travellers are opting to stay with Aabalree.”
The guest house has made modifications to adhere to new hospitality guidelines.
He added: “We have chosen to close off the communal lounge as a result of Covid-19 and our dorm rooms have also had to be reduced in capacity, in order to stay compliant with physical distancing.
“Amongst many ways we are staying safe, we have invested in creating spaces for people to eat in their rooms and we now offer takeaway breakfast service.
“Although there has been a change in uptake we remain positive and the and the pedestrianisation of Union Street and outdoor public seating area have proven popular with the local community and visitors.
“There is a strong sense of community around Union Street following the Dundee Design and UNESCO street project.
“Both residents & businesses are working together to ensure the great vibes can continue. Every cloud has a silver lining.”