Caravans were stuck in a huge traffic jam on the M5 this morning as more than 10 million motorists hit the streets today and England's beauty spots are preparing for a large influx of tourists after the travel restrictions on locks have been relaxed.
The M5 in Exeter was flooded with motorhomes that drove to the coast when tourists made their weekend trip on the so-called "super Saturday".
Traffic on the M25 in Kent also increased as hotels, restaurants and pubs were reopened and people in England could stay longer or longer.
There have been several reports of accidents on the M5 while on vacation, with the Exeter-based HART ambulance team heading south toward Junction 31.
Around 6.5 million Britons have planned overnight stays with friends or family. Around two million go to campsites, another 680,000 go to caravan sites and millions more stay in hotels and B & Bs, according to studies by the RAC.
On the same day, the popular Alton Towers theme park reopened with security measures such as temperature control upon entry, as restrictions were relaxed to allow some leisure and hospitality businesses to get back to work.
Meanwhile, booking sites have seen traffic increase, with Booking.com seeing a rise in residential property searches and Virgin Experience Days seeing a 65 percent increase in visits to the short break category compared to the previous month.
However, according to research by the Zipcar UK car sharing club, most travel to destinations that are no more than two hours from their home, on average 110 miles.
The M5 Exeter was flooded this morning at Junction 30 with RVs and caravans that drove to the coast when tourists made their weekend trip on the so-called "Super Saturday".
Traffic on the M25 motorway in Kent early in the morning as hotels, restaurants and hotels are reopening and people can stay overnight or longer as part of the next phase of easing the coronavirus lockdown in England
There were also several reports of accidents on the M5 during vacation traffic, with the Exeter-based HART ambulance team heading south toward Junction 31
James Taylor, general manager at Zipcar, said: & # 39; Since the strictest blocking restrictions were relaxed from June 1st, we have already seen a 36% increase in reservations for our roundtrip service.
"The UK public is clearly keen to take to the streets, and domestic travel will play an important role in boosting the economy."
Plymouth and the Isle of Wight are expected to be two of the UK's big winners from the boom in stays amid the coronavirus pandemic as overseas travelers' visits continue to dry up.
New research by Colliers International has shown that the Plymouth hotel sector is likely to recover faster than anyone else in the UK when vacationers flock to the South West.
However, some traditional tourist hotspots such as London are severely affected by the lack of overseas visitors due to travel restrictions.
Colliers' first Covid-19 Recovery Hotels Index also said that a strong recovery in domestic tourism would particularly likely support the Isle of Wight economy.
Exeter, Norwich, Blackpool and Cornwall are also likely to recover faster, according to experts from commercial real estate specialists.
Marc Finney, head of hotel and resort consulting at Colliers, believes that British vacation destinations are less likely to be affected by dwindling overseas visitors and major events.
Traffic on the M25 motorway in Kent begins this morning when "Super Saturday" begins. Booking websites report an increase in traffic when holidaymakers look for a vacation in the UK
Traffic on the M25 motorway in Kent with a pictured car towing a motor home. Around 6.5 million Brits plan to spend the night with friends or family, and around two million travel to campsites
The M5 in Exeter, flooded this morning by motorhomes and caravans that drove to the coast as tourists escaped as hotels, restaurants and pubs reopened and people in England could stay overnight or longer
Traffic on the M25 motorway in Kent begins as "Super Saturday". It is because booking websites are reporting an increase in traffic and Booking.com is seeing an increase in domestic property searches
"In the short term, so good news for traditional British seaside resorts like Blackpool and Bournemouth, national park locations and Devon and Cornwall," he said.
"However, some of these markets have traditionally been very small in the top 10, and although they top the list, the increase in absolute terms will be small."
The study found Plymouth topped the index since 86 percent of its visitors are local tourists, and it also believes its large proportion of budget hotels will make it more resilient to the financial impact of the current crisis.
In the meantime, Malcolm Corn, CEO of Visit Cornwall, warned people to book ahead as bookings for the region increase "across the board" and web traffic to the website increases 20 percent year over year.
He told MailOnline: "We advise people to book in advance because capacity is limited, such as campsites have less camping and we have seen an increase in bookings. We would tell people to research, go ahead and book in advance.
Members of the public queue are queuing up this morning in a socially distant manner to enter the Alton Towers after the government eased restrictions to allow some leisure and hospitality establishments to reopen
A member of the public has their temperature checked by an employee wearing gloves, a mask, and a face mask at the entrance to the Alton Towers this morning, while the popular theme park reopens today
Members of the public, some with face masks, walk around the Alton Towers as the theme park reopens with security measures
A child wears a face mask while his temperature is checked by an employee with PPE at the entrance to the Alton Towers
& # 39; Many companies are happy that they can now request deposits and payments. We have more new users on our website than last year. People who thought of going to the Algarve or Tuscany are now thinking of Cornwall.
"The strong message is that you have to book before you come, and also remember to book for restaurants and attractions, as everyone has pre-booked."
He added: “Bookings have increased across the board, different people like different parts, so the climb was everywhere.
“If you drive to Cornwall you can manage your own security. You can wear masks on public transport, but hanging around at an airport is not as attractive as it used to be. That is why many are choosing to stay in the city this year, especially families and multi-generation groups.
& # 39; Web traffic is back to last year's level, an increase, but of course we expect more if the weekend continues. It's between 10 and 20 percent higher than the same period last year, considering that we have dropped 60 percent. So that's a big increase. & # 39;
As the British prepare to stay at campsites, the popularity of DIY motorhomes has increased, so families can save money by converting a regular van and traveling cheaply across the UK.
The converted Van by Samantha and Neil Dodd, which cost around £ 3,000 before their weekend getaways
The interior of Samantha and Neil's converted van that they plan to use this summer in the UK and next year in Europe
The interior of Samantha and Neils Dodd with a toilet on the right and a sleeping area on the left, which they have converted to travel cheaply around the UK and on weekend trips, as their vacation in Europe was canceled this summer
Samantha and Neil Dodd rebuilt a van in anticipation of weekends, costing just £ 3,000 and running solar panels, recreational batteries and gasoline for hot water in the shower.
She told MailOnline: "We have just canceled a vacation abroad this year and plan to use it here for weekends while paddling and kayaking.
"We want more vacation in this country and possibly next year to Europe."
In the meantime, the Isle of Wight is also expected to benefit from a significant number of British tourists, with domestic tourists who visit the area in their free time generally accounting for around 90 percent of the visits.
Mr. Finney also said that hotels that focus on their rooms could outperform websites that tend to generate more revenue from other services, such as gyms and spas.
He added, "This is due to social distancing protocols that will inevitably limit the use of public areas and ancillary facilities, including restaurants, bars, meeting rooms, and wellness facilities, in the short term."
In the meantime, the typical tourist hotspots of London, Oxford and Cambridge occupy the bottom three places in the ranking of 35 travel destinations, as they are likely to miss their normal level of foreign tourists.
Colliers also emphasized that the cancellation of major events such as Wimbledon and a variety of conferences and exhibitions would particularly affect the capital's hotel industry.