One in four Europeans cannot afford a summer holiday

One in four Europeans cannot afford a summer holiday

One in four Europeans cannot afford a summer holiday

The holiday season is well and truly upon us - but according to the latest figures from Eurostat, as many as one in four European cannot afford to take an annual holiday away. 

Holidays unaffordable for many Europeans

The ability to afford a week-long vacation during the summer holidays is often considered a benchmark for how far people can participate in social life. And Eurostat’s latest batch of data shows that this ability is sadly lacking for many people in the European Union - and above all for single-parent families

The latest statistics, which are updated by Eurostat each year, show that for nearly 28 percent of the EU’s 514 million residents an annual week-long summer holiday remains nothing more than a nice idea. Summer holidays also remain out of the question for as many as 44 percent of single-parent families. 

Swedes top, Romanians bottom, Germans in the middle

Overall, Eurostat found that more than 90 percent of Swedish people enjoyed a holiday last year, making them the most holiday-happy nation in Europe. The lowest proportion of holiday-takers is to be found in Romania, where almost 59 percent of people were stuck at home during the summer holidays. 

Germany ranked somewhere in the middle of the top half of the table, with only 14,7 percent of its population unable to afford a holiday, placing it alongside the Netherlands, Austria and Denmark. 

Despite this good overall performance, however, the data shows that single parents with dependent children are disproportionately disadvantaged in Germany, despite the high national wealth. 31 percent of solo parents had to forego an annual holiday last year due to financial constraints.

Holiday trend is slowly improving

“A holiday trip for many people is an unattainable luxury,” said Sabine Zimmerman, chairperson of the Committee for Families, Elderly, Women and Youth. “Not being able to travel is a sign of poverty, which finally must be tackled effectively.”

Thankfully, the statistics do show signs of improvement: back in 2010, 37,3 percent of Europeans could not afford an annual holiday, compared with 2018’s 27,9 percent. 



Abi Carter

Abi studied History & German at the University of Manchester. She has since worked as a writer, editor and content marketeer, but still has a soft spot for museums, castles...

Read more



Leave a comment