From the Wires
Mayan Prophecy Drives Surge in One-way Flight Searches
By: PR Newswire
Dec. 11, 2012 02:02 AM
EDINBURGH, Scotland, December 11, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --
41% increase to South of France and 30% increase in one-way searches to Turkey ahead of 21st December 2012*
Believers in the supernatural are flocking to two small villages - Bugarach in the South of France and Şirince in Turkey - as the end of the Mayan Calendar nears, reveals leading travel search site Skyscanner.
Dedicated followers believe the end of the world is nigh as the Mayan Calendar comes to an end on 21st December 2012, with some expecting the remote farming village of Bugarach to offer an escape. The plan: to catch a connecting flight of an altogether different kind, where in-flight re-runs of the film Alien are replaced with a much more realistic encounter.
Incredibly, searches for flights to the south of France are up 41% in the week before 21st December compared. And, with a 42% increase in searches from the UK alone, that's a good few British believers!
But France is not the only place to see a surge in visitors. Şirince, a village in the Turkish Izmir Province, is seeing one-way flight searches up 30%.
However, clearly not everyone believes that the end really is nigh. Across Europe, 22nd December looks set to be the busiest getaway day of the entire year, with Skyscanner seeing its highest volume of searches as families head home or get away for a break at Christmas.
Skyscanner's Victoria Bailie commented: "We were surprised to see how big an increase there has been in searches for flights to the South of France and to Izmir in Turkey leading up to the 21st December: the date of the Mayan Prophecy. Although the fact that we've seen the highest number of flight searches all year for flights on the following day suggests that not everyone is convinced the end of the world really is nigh."
For true Mayan Prophecy believers, one-way tickets to Perpignan, an hour's drive from Bugarach, in the week leading up to 21st December currently start at £483, leaving from Manchester. Alternatively, one-way flights to Izmir, an hour's drive away from Şirince, currently cost £283 from London Stansted.**
*Searches for 14-20th December compared with 7th-13th December
Skyscanner is a leading global travel search site providing instant online comparisons for millions of flights, from flights to Thailand to flights to USA as well as car hire and hotels. Founded in 2003 by three IT professionals, Gareth Williams, Barry Smith and Bonamy Grimes, Skyscanner is the no.1 travel search website in Europe and no.3 worldwide, receiving 30 million visits per month. The site is available in 30 languages and its suite of free mobile apps for iPhone, iPad, Android, Windows Phone and BlackBerry have been downloaded over 11 million times. The company employs close to 200 staff and has its global headquarters in Edinburgh, UK with Asia Pacific hub offices in Singapore and Beijing and future expansion planned to capatalise on huge global growth.
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