UNDER EMBARGO: 00.01, 28 JULY 2011
66.5 MILLION BOOKS READ BY BRITS ON A TYPICAL
TWO WEEK SUMMER HOLIDAY
NEW REPORT REVEALS EUROPE’S HOLIDAY READING HABITS
- Brits are most prolific holiday readers compared to European counterparts
- Brits read 2.6 books each on a typical two week holiday- totalling 66.5 million across the UK
- Germans and Spanish are three times more likely to read X-rated fiction than the British
As schools break up and we enjoy the peak summer holiday season, new research out today reveals that, for every two week summer holiday, an average of 66.5 million books will be read by Brits. In addition, across the European countries surveyed, an average 320 million books* will be read. X-rated novels will make up over 7.5 million** of these and are most likely to be read by the Germans and the Spanish.
The ‘What’s the Story’ report, conducted by leading online travel and lifestyle retailer, lastminute.com, questioned more than 10,000 adults across 9 European countries*** and found that holidays are the second most popular place to read a book (65%) after home (83%). Of those who read on holiday, just over 2 books are read on average per person on a typical two-week break.
Two thirds (65%) of Europeans read on holiday, with Swedes (72%) topping the reading poll. In close second are the British and the Irish (both 71%), while the Italians and the French are the least likely to pack a book (55% and 56% respectively).
Within the UK, women are more likely to read on holiday (78%) than men (64%) with females getting through an average of 3 books on a two week break, compared to 2 books for men.
The report showed that Britons who read on holiday are the most prolific readers and get through, on average, 2.6 books on a two-week break. By contrast, the Spanish holiday readers are the least bookish, averaging just 1.7, and the Irish read an average of 2.4 books on holiday.
Almost three quarters (73%) of adults surveyed end up being active on holiday, and to reflect this, Europe’s favourite genre is ‘action, adventure, crime and thriller.’ The likes of Stieg Larsson’s Millennium trilogy tops holiday makers’ reading lists – 63% of all Europeans surveyed said they read this genre on holiday.
Novels such as Stephanie Meyer’s ‘Twilight’ appeal most to the Irish holiday readers with almost a third (30%) favouring ‘chick lit’ and romance novels. A quarter of Italians who read on holiday are also keen on this genre.
X-rated reads appeared at the bottom of the list for all European holiday readers surveyed. However the Germans (6%) and the Spanish (7%) are three times more likely to read salacious material while on holiday than their more reserved British counterparts (2%).
Perhaps unpredictably, comedy is most favoured by German and Irish holiday readers (30%) whilst the Mediterraneans (France, Spain and Italy) opt for science fiction, comics and fantasy fiction such as Harry Potter (29%, 36% and 28% respectively). The Spanish topped the list of readers of spiritual, self-help and religious literature (17%).
Mark Maddock, Managing Director of lastminute.com UK and Ireland said, “Our ‘What’s the Story’ report has thrown up some really interesting findings – from how much we read to what we read on holiday and how this differs from country to country. Overall however, books and stories seem to be very much part and parcel of people’s holidays. Whether it’s to learn or to be entertained, they really do become a part of our own holiday stories.”
Europe’s favourite genre of holiday novel
|1||Action, Adventure, Crime & Thriller books|
|2||Biographies & memoirs|
|4||Science fiction, comics & fantasy|
|5||Chick-lit & romance|
|6||Spiritual/religious & self-help|
Based on those who read on holiday
Likelihood to read on holiday
|Country||% of adults in each country who read on holiday|
Based on all adults in each country
Number of books on average read on a two-week holiday
|Country||Number of books read on two week holiday|
Based on those who read on holiday
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Notes to Editors
Where figures are based on the total number of Europeans these represent an average figure.
* This figure was calculated using the total population in each country and the figures from YouGov that state the percentage of adults who read on holiday, in each country. This was then multiplied by 2 (the average number of books each adult reader reads in a two week holiday period).
** This figure was calculated using the total population in each country and the figures from YouGov that state the percentage of adults who read on holiday, in each country, along YouGov’s figure of the percentage of adults in each country who read X-rated literature on holiday. The figure assumes that each adult who reads X’rated literature reads one X-rated book.
*** Research commissioned by lastminute.com and carried out by YouGov between 1-11 July 2011. Total sample size was 10,291 adults in the UK (2050), Ireland (1030), France (1000), Germany (1082), Spain (1056), Italy (1036), Sweden (1012), Denmark (1018), Norway(1007). The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and representative of each country listed (aged 18+).
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