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Holiday clothing demand sees huge spike as travel restrictions are lifted

Tom Bottomley
14 July 2020

Following the government announcement of the lifting of travel restrictions at the beginning of July, an immediate impact in online demand for holiday clothing has been revealed in the latest data from

The government lifted the travel ban on 59 countries – which took effect from 10 July – meaning Brits don’t need to self-isolate to and from the specified destinations, and it seems the public have been “trading in their lockdown sweaters for swimwear” as they look to get away.

Stuart McClure, co-founder of, said: “Many of us would have counted out the idea of a summer holiday back in April, but the news from the government has been a welcome one for online shoppers.

“We are seeing consumers flocking online, on the hunt for fresh holiday wardrobes. For the first time this summer holiday clothing has overtaken stay-at-home fashion and we don’t see this trend stopping anytime soon.”

Year-on-year (YOY), in the first two weeks of July, consumer searches for dresses were up +82%, sandals +26%, and sunglasses, swim shorts and bikinis were all +22%.

Tie dye garments have been particularly popular seeing a huge spike in interest, with searches for tie dye bikinis up a massive +400% YOY.

On that trend and others, stylist Jessie Stein commented: “Tie dye has been one of the surprising trends of lockdown, and this is carrying over into our holiday clothing. The colour tie dye brings to an outfit makes it a perfect choice to include in a summer wardrobe.

Linen is also everywhere at the moment, it’s comfortable, lightweight and looks amazing in neutral summer colours. We are searching for everything linen, whether it is shorts, trousers or jumpsuits.

“Also, thick comfy sandals have officially overtaken the dreaded flip flop. Working with the LovetheSales data team, they tell me that demand for Birkenstock sandals are up +23% year-on-year, and I’m not surprised people are falling in love with the comfy shoe.”

Indeed searches for chunky sandals in general are +24% YOY, and other findings see linen shorts seeing a whopping +236% in searches YOY, linen wide leg trousers getting +83% YOY interest, puff sleeve wrap dresses +83%, linen jumpsuits and playsuits +49%, bucket hats +50% and searches for thick oversized sunglasses have been booming at +50% YOY.

Online retailers have also welcomed the news from the government and have been preparing huge summer savings on holiday clothing in order to boost sales.

The big retailers are desperate to shift built-up summer stock from the lockdown with some fashion brands sitting on billions of pounds worth of clothing. The volume of online discounts retailers are offering on their summer clothing is up +22% in July,2020, compared to July 2019.

On the summer discounting frenzy, Stuart McClure added: “Retailers have been suffering in sales since March, and billions of SS20 stock is gathering dust in warehouses. The lifting of travel restrictions from the UK government is a potential lifeline for many fashion retailers as they try to shift as much overstock as possible before the end of summer.

“We’re seeing levels of discounting bigger than most summer sales in years gone by. It has never been a better time for shoppers to update their summer wardrobes, with some retailers discounting up to 80% off the price of summer clothing.”

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