Squeezed Middle Make Up Over 50% of Applicants for Travelfund's Holiday Credit Account

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Take up reveals the huge pressure on family and middle class finances as they seek alternative ways to fund ‘essential’ holidays

Middle class professionals make up over 50% of applicants for Travelfund’s unique Fly Now Pay Later travel credit account, which enables consumers to take their holiday before they pay for it, and spread payments over 12 months.

This highlights the growing pressure on household finances and underlines how hard-pressed families, not prepared to forego their annual trip abroad, are seeking alternative ways to pay for their holiday.

In just three months since its launch in June this year, Travelfund has experienced a surging demand for its credit account. Unique visitors to its site have more than doubled month on month to August. Total unique visitors are well over 15,000 and over 1,000 have applied via its Fly Now Pay Later platform.

Through the platform, customers can open a credit account of up to £2,000, enabling them to fly before they pay, spreading the cost over 12 months with no hidden charges and no early redemption penalties.

Travelfund’s data indicates that it is the squeezed middle, in particular, who continue to feel the financial pinch. The overwhelming majority of those who booked holidays – more than 82% – are in full-time employment, with an average household income of £33,700 – considerably higher than the UK national average salary of £27,000.

Over half of applicants are middle class professionals or hold management positions. Despite this, over a third of applicants (32%) indicated that they had no savings accounts.

Paying by installment for travel and holidays is gaining increasing acceptance. According to a recent YouGov survey, 35% of consumers find the prospect of paying for a holiday over a 12 month period appealing. This figure rises to nearly half (48%) among 25-34 year olds, indicating an emerging trend among the younger generation.

Despite the financial squeeze, consumers increasingly view an annual holiday as essential. According to ABTA’s latest Consumer Trends survey, one in five people said that an overseas holiday was a necessity (21 per cent). { http://abta.com/resource-zone/publication/the-consumer-holiday-trends-report-2013 }

The travel industry is responding to this continued demand and is becoming increasingly innovative and flexible in the way it accepts payments. A number of holiday companies, including Virgin Holidays and loveholidays.com now accept payment by monthly instalment via direct debit prior to travel.

The trend is also in evidence globally, with airlines being early adopters of instalment payment. Both KLM and American Airlines offer schemes to help travellers manage payment over time, without having to use credit cards.

Jasper Dykes, CEO and co-founder of Travelfund, commented:

“It’s clear from our figures that Britain’s middle classes are still feeling the financial squeeze but are also determined to take their holidays and are comfortable considering alternative ways of funding them. Our view is that paying for travel and holidays by instalment will become increasingly popular in the UK and is in line with a global trend of more flexible travel payment options and routes being offered to consumers. This is great for tour operators as it should boost sales but it’s also good for consumers as it gives them greater flexibility and choice over their holiday plans.”

For further information please contact:
Morgan Rossiter
Richard Morgan Evans/Pippa Wiltshire/Tania Wild                                            
T: 02031953240
M: 07751087291

About TravelFund Limited

The Fly Now Pay Later service is an industry first alternative payments solution for travel brands founded by a team of finance, payments, travel and technology experts. Fly Now Pay Later allows customers to spread the cost of their holiday before and after they travel. Fly Now Pay Later brings to market a range of innovative SaaS revenue enhancement tools to the online, call centre enabled and retail travel sector. Fly Now Pay Later is designed to increase conversion, deliver incremental revenue to existing customers and reduce online payment transaction costs significantly while offering financial protection that benefits the consumer.

Executive Team

Nick Caplan - Chairman. Nick has substantial industry experience firstly in his role as Chairman of Faster Payments, a key part of the UK’s payments infrastructure, but also as a Director at Abacus, a media software company; Director of Oxand, a risk engineering/software company and previously as Group Chief Marketing Officer at Logica, a £3.5bn IT services company.

Jasper Dykes - Founder and CEO. Jasper is a diligent, successful and passionate entrepreneur who has previously founded a series of start-ups in the leisure sector. Jasper’s desire to jump in to the world of high growth tech start ups led him to pioneer the development of this market first technology platform, having spent the last couple of years studying the consumer finance, payments and travel sector.

Enrico di San Marzano - COO and Co-Founder. Enrico has over 30 years’ experience in the travel industry. Most recently he spent 7 years at TUI Travel Plc successfully running key brands within specialist and creating some of the most profitable businesses within TUI. Prior to this Enrico ran his own travel business which he sold to First Choice Plc.

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Richard Morgan Evans / Pippa Wiltshire / Tania Wild
Morgan Rossiter
+44 2031953240
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