The great escape: Brits flee royal wedding

While much of Britain grinds to a halt for the royal wedding this week, Susie Cleary will be camping with friends in the wilds of rural Wales, in blissful oblivion.

"We booked it in February. There'll be no television, there will probably be radio but I don't imagine we'll listen," said the 30-year-old lawyer from London.

She is one of millions of Britons who are planning to go on holiday when their compatriots celebrate the nuptials of Prince William and Kate Middleton in Westminster Abbey on April 29.

Some, like her, just want to avoid the whole thing after months of manic media coverage of the preparations for wedding of the son of Prince Charles and the late Princess Diana.

"With all the hype around the wedding it would be a nightmare to be in London in terms of transport and security," added Cleary.

"Also the whole event itself, I am completely not interested, it is a total waste of time, it is really irritating and pointless. I do object to it being forced on me."

Fully 45 percent of Britons are not planning to watch the celebrations, with 32 percent of people saying they would tune in, according to a survey by pollsters YouGov for online travel agent Lastminute.com.

But many people will be taking their vacations at the time of the wedding simply to take advantage of a long break coupling a holiday granted for the occasion with Easter and the May Day public holidays.

"I'm doing it myself," said Sean Tipton of the Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA).

"A lot of people have been smart and realised that by taking three days off work you can get an 11-day break."

At least three million Britons are set to travel overseas during the period, according to estimates by ABTA.

Spain is still the favourite destination for British holidaymakers while there are excellent bargains to Egypt and Tunisia following recent revolutions there, it said.

"It's usually a fairly quiet time of year and there is a big increase in the number of people travelling compared to the same period last year," Tipton said.

"It's not just people trying to escape the royal wedding though. You can easily do that by just not turning on the television."

Heather Carswell, a senior executive at the Lonely Planet travel group's London office, said there was no point being stuck in the crowds in London next week for a brief glimpse of the newlyweds.

"I'm not alone in feeling lacklustre about the big day. In my friendship group, the hot topic of conversation since the date of the wedding was announced has been around how best to spend the extra public holiday," she wrote in a blog.

Holiday firms have been advertising special breaks to help people escape the wedding, with two weeks in Mediterranean hotspots such as Turkey and Portugal on offer for well under £200 (228 euros, $325).

Sales are up by an "astonishing" 59.3 percent on the same period last year, said Paul Furner, managing director of online travel agent TravelRepublic.

"The run of bank holidays, and the fact that the royal wedding is being screened and celebrated in lots of places outside of the UK, has been too much to resist," he said.

"Equally, we are also seeing strong demand from those wanting to escape the celebrations completely."

But in austerity Britain, where the Conservative-led government has introduced tough cuts to public services to cut a record deficit, there are also a number of events at home for the wedding shy.

A cultural group promoting Welsh consciousness called Balchder Cymru (Pride of Wales) has set up an "Escape the Wedding Camp".

"We are giving people an opportunity to escape the razzle-dazzle and media hype that will take place," said Adam Phillips, a spokesman for the group.

British newspapers, even those that support the monarchy, have also been advising royal-weary readers how to get away from it all.

The Daily Telegraph suggested the Antipodes Islands off the coast of New Zealand, the nearest land to the spot opposite London on the globe - although as a UNESCO nature reserve it is off-limits to most.

News
people
News
people And here is why...
News
peopleStella McCartney apologises over controversial Instagram picture
Arts and Entertainment
Richard Burr remains the baker to beat on the Great British Bake Off
tvRichard remains the baker to beat as Chetna begins to flake
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
The village was originally named Llansanffraid-ym-Mechain after the Celtic female Saint Brigit, but the name was changed 150 years ago to Llansantffraid – a decision which suggests the incorrect gender of the saint
newsWelsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?
News
i100
Sport
footballLatest scores and Twitter updates
Arts and Entertainment
Amazon has added a cautionary warning to Tom and Jerry cartoons on its streaming service
tv
Life and Style
Couples who boast about their relationship have been condemned as the most annoying Facebook users
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Hayley Williams performs with Paramore in New York
musicParamore singer says 'Steal Your Girl' is itself stolen from a New Found Glory hit
Travel
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
Independent Travel Videos
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Amsterdam
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Giverny
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in St John's
Independent Travel Videos
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Travel

    Service Charge Accountant

    30,000 to 35,000 per annum: Accountancy Action: We are currently recruiting on...

    Management Accountant

    28,000 to 32,000 per annum: Accountancy Action: Our client, a hospitality busi...

    Food and Beverage Cost Controller

    18,000 to 20,000 per annum: Accountancy Action: Our fantastic leisure client i...

    Marketing Analyst / Marketing Executive

    £20 - 24k: Guru Careers: A Marketing Analyst / Marketing Executive is needed t...

    Day In a Page

    Italian couples fake UK divorce scam on an ‘industrial scale’

    Welcome to Maidenhead, the divorce capital of... Italy

    A look at the the legal tourists who exploited our liberal dissolution rules
    Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon

    Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon

    The vintage series has often been criticised for racial stereotyping
    Llansanffraid is now Llansantffraid. Welsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?

    Llansanffraid is now Llansantffraid

    Welsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?
    Sistine Chapel to ‘sing’ with new LED lights designed to bring Michelangelo’s masterpiece out of the shadows

    Let there be light

    Sistine Chapel to ‘sing’ with new LEDs designed to bring Michelangelo’s masterpiece out of the shadows
    Great British Bake Off, semi-final, review: Richard remains the baker to beat

    Tensions rise in Bake Off's pastry week

    Richard remains the baker to beat as Chetna begins to flake
    Paris Fashion Week, spring/summer 2015: Time travel fashion at Louis Vuitton in Paris

    A look to the future

    It's time travel fashion at Louis Vuitton in Paris
    The 10 best bedspreads

    The 10 best bedspreads

    Before you up the tog count on your duvet, add an extra layer and a room-changing piece to your bed this autumn
    Ebola outbreak: The children orphaned by the virus – then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection

    The children orphaned by Ebola...

    ... then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection
    Pride: Are censors pandering to homophobia?

    Are censors pandering to homophobia?

    US film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence
    The magic of roundabouts

    Lords of the rings

    Just who are the Roundabout Appreciation Society?
    Why do we like making lists?

    Notes to self: Why do we like making lists?

    Well it was good enough for Ancient Egyptians and Picasso...
    Hong Kong protests: A good time to open a new restaurant?

    A good time to open a new restaurant in Hong Kong?

    As pro-democracy demonstrators hold firm, chef Rowley Leigh, who's in the city to open a new restaurant, says you couldn't hope to meet a nicer bunch
    Paris Fashion Week: Karl Lagerfeld leads a feminist riot on 'Boulevard Chanel'

    Paris Fashion Week

    Lagerfeld leads a feminist riot on 'Boulevard Chanel'
    Bruce Chatwin's Wales: One of the finest one-day walks in Britain

    Simon Calder discovers Bruce Chatwin's Wales

    One of the finest one-day walks you could hope for - in Britain
    10 best children's nightwear

    10 best children's nightwear

    Make sure the kids stay cosy on cooler autumn nights in this selection of pjs, onesies and nighties