There are Still Bookings for School Summer Hols

IF YOU haven't yet booked your vacation, what are the chances of getting away during the school summer holidays? We've asked some of Britain's biggest tour operators, focusing firmly on mainstream packages for families to the Med.

Sunworld is most upfront about problems it's faced with Turkey, where it is market leader with 30 per cent of UK business, saying: "The threat of terrorist activity has deterred many customers from booking a holiday, despite the number of offers." So, it is not surprising it still has plenty of unsold holidays in Turkey during the school holidays.

Britain's largest holiday company, Thomson, says it still has "pockets of availability". Prices are not generally higher than last summer, and a 14-night half-board holiday at Portinatx in Ibiza is pounds 735 for an adult.

The new boy in the Mediterranean holidays is one Richard Branson, whose Virgin Sun brand began on 1 May. It has vacancies in August.

Cosmos has added extra flights to Menorca and Tenerife, and has late bookings, i.e. pounds 329 for a fortnight at the Parque de la Paz in Tenerife, leaving Gatwick on 22 August. It also has some seat-only deals, now an endangered species. Regional airports are not selling as strongly as the key holiday airports of Gatwick and Manchester, so Humberside, Luton and Bristol still have space.

No-frills airlines such as Go and easyJet led to fears that seat-only passengers to Spain might not find any accommodation. "They'd be wise to secure a place to stay in advance," Cosmos says. But no firm we talked to reports over-booking for clients who've booked full holidays in advance.

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