A record number of people owned a second home in Britain last year, figures show, another factor increasing levels of holiday traffic on the nation's roads.
The figures were boosted by an increasing trend for Britons to holiday in the UK rather than travel abroad.
Low returns on traditional investments were also a factor in the 2.6% jump in numbers owning a new-build second property in 2009, to 245,384.
More and more people are also seeking the bestbreakdown cover available to ensure that frequent long journeys for weekends away are not ruined by expensive car trouble.
Estate agent Knight Frank said it expected demand for the properties to continue growing during 2010, and is predicting a further 2% increase in the number who own a holiday property by the end of this year.
The impact of the recession and the weak pound, as well as environmental concerns, have helped drive the trend for people to take so-called staycations, contributing to a 67% growth in the number of nights spent in self-catering apartments in the UK between 2007 and 2010.
Growth in UK tourism in the past three years expanded beyond the peak summer months to include September and October, as well as Christmas and New Year.
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