As the summer holidays come to an end, research conducted by Heathrow Airport has shown that 71% of travelers would rather pack their suitcases full of books than opt for a lightweight eReader. Books fare far better around sunscreen, swimming pools and sand, but our love of a good paperback goes deeper – 67% said they prefer to stick with print because they enjoy the feel of a real book in their hands. Over 1 in 10 (12%) want to leave technology behind altogether whilst abroad.
Of the 2,000 people surveyed, 67% said they turn to friends and family for their reading recommendations, closely followed by librarians and book-sellers (22%). Auto-generated online suggestions were found to be least helpful – 33% felt that the recommendations were too stereotyped, and 15% argued that they were just plain dull.
Heathrow Airport Retail Director Muriel Zingraff-Shariff said: “There’s no doubt that the popularity of eBooks has boomed in recent years, but when it comes to relaxing on holiday it seems you just can’t beat a good book. People want a break from technology whilst they’re abroad, so it’s understandable that people would rather swap their Blackberry for Malorie Blackman.”
Simon Smith, Managing Director at WH Smith Travel said: “Books remain a valuable part of people’s holiday experience. Our stores at Heathrow are always popular with customers and we’re delighted to continue to offer a great range of bestselling titles, airport exclusives and fantastic promotions to the 70 million passengers who fly through the airport each year.”