We tried to book rush hour vacations to Butlins, Pontins, Haven and Center Parcs – this is what happened

Is it difficult to book a family vacation for four during peak season in August?

Quite difficult if you don’t want to spend £ 1000.

As demand for UK vacations increases due to quarantine restrictions on overseas travel, many large holiday park companies are struggling to keep up with demand.

Queues on the Butlins website and full stays at Center Parcs drove up prices elsewhere and when we tried to book a family vacation for the first week of August, the difficulty in finding a vacation that affordable summer becomes obvious.

We searched for a vacation for seven nights starting August 2 for two adults and two children. Here is what we found.


Haven has a handy guide to show you exactly where it’s available during the summer months. A small green circle indicates the parks where you can find availability in August. As of this writing, Blackpool, Essex, Kent, North Wales, Scotland, Somerset and Sussex all have good uptime.

A park relatively close to Manchester, Haven’s Lake District Park, has extremely limited availability until September.

The cheapest holiday park in Blackpool for a week in August from Monday 2 is huge £ 1,129 for a four-person caravan. The prices are similar for Martin simple.

Most of Cornwall is sold out for the week, with prices going up to £ 1,600 for glamping on Perran Sands. It’s almost £ 2,000 for Devon Cliffs and there are no seven-night stays available for less than £ 1,000 in England – although there is a Scottish apartment for just over £ 800.

Haven has experienced issues with its reservation system in recent weeks and is currently updating its systems to meet demand. Changes will also be made to the parks.

He says: “Following feedback from our customers, we have extended the opening hours of our pools and added additional sessions in our showbars. In addition, we have implemented new booking processes for showbars, restaurants. and swimming sessions which will see availability published according to your arrival dates.

“This helps ensure that you receive all the information at the same time to make the booking process as fair as possible for everyone. “

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The cheapest rooms in Butlins holiday parks are usually the Silver Rooms. You’ll pay £ 1,471 at Bognor Regis for two adults and two children.

Butlins has seen massive vacation demand over the past few weeks, with the website regularly crashing and queues forming from people looking to book travel.

If you want something for next year, the resort chain has listed booking details for March 2022 – with families of four enjoying stays for under £ 90.

The case was published on HotUKdeals, and a lot of people have already booked. For four nights, two children and two adults can stay in a Silver room at Bognor Regis for £ 88 (was £ 335).

For a family of six, the price increases slightly to £ 126 (from £ 478). If you want to plan a getaway before next year, Groupon is also offering up to 20% off Butlins stays.


Pontins is the cheapest option we can find for the first week of August. Brean Sands, for example, is priced at just £ 400 for a family of four. The price is for self-catering but you can pay extra for half board or full board.

Pakefield, Southport and Prestatyn are also available at lower prices than Butlins.

Pontins offers several summer offers, including one free child for two adults who book for summer 2021.

However, there is a caveat to all of this – Pontins only does four nights starting August 2. Big savings can be found the following week for seven-night stays, starting Saturday August 7th.

Central parks

If you try to book a Center Parcs stay from August 2, you will be disappointed.

The message for all the locations on the Center Parcs site says: “Sorry, we did not find any availability for Mon, Aug 2, 2021. We have limited availability for 2021. Why not try looking for 2022. “

There are stays available at other times, but peak summer vacations are hard to come by for popular resorts.

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