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At Coast & Country Cottages, 2023 was another fabulous year, despite the current economic climate. We have seen an outstanding average occupancy of 85% throughout the peak summer period. And with booking occupancy now back to our impressive pre-Covid level, it is a positive picture for holiday homeowners in South Devon.

In the past 12 months, we have seen some notable changes in the way customers book, their intentions and what they desire from their holidays. Using our own data and statistics from our parent company Sykes Holiday Cottages, we are delighted to have created this insightful guide which we hope will provide useful information on booking trends from both a local and national perspective.

 For a full physical copy of the report please contact us on, call 01548 802171 or visit the Let Your Cottage page on our website.

Use the quick links below to learn more about a specific area of the holiday letting market, or read on for an overall summary of our Market Insights Report:

An overview of the holiday let market with Coast & Country Cottages

South Devon Holiday Let Market Insights Report - The Coast and Country Cottages Logo

Here is an overview of how Coast & Country Cottages is performing and our key achievements for the season so far:

  • We now have 529 properties in South Devon – 2.9% more than at the same point last year.
  • Bookings have returned to pre-covid levels. Average occupancy throughout the peak summer holiday period was 85%.
  • 35% of our bookings taken were made within four weeks of the holiday start date.
  • 26% of bookings were short breaks, a 3% rise from 23% in 2022.
  • Bookings were made up of 40% couples, 31% families, 27% adult groups and only 2% solo travellers.
  • Our parent company, Sykes Holiday Cottages, are now a B Corp certified organisation and we are proud to be a part of that.

Top performing properties

Below are some of our highest performing properties for 2023. Figures are correct as of 08/01/2024.

14a Courtenay Street
Salcombe, Devon
50 bookings 2023, 7 already for 2024

3 Dartview
Dartmouth, Devon
44 bookings 2023, 31 already for 2024

2 Embankment House
Dartmouth, Devon
44 bookings 2023, 21 already for 2024

Hope Cove, Devon
43 bookings 2023, 26 bookings already for 2024

Woodleigh, Devon
43 bookings 2023, 17 already for 2024

Optimising your property’s booking and earning potential

Dynamic Pricing Tools

In addition to excellent marketing exposure, Coast & Country Cottages offers dynamic pricing tools, giving owners the ability to maximise their income as well as their booking numbers. We automatically adjust prices in line with demand by analysing searches, booking trends, and individual property performance. 

Owners that took our advice in 2023 and utilised these dynamic pricing tools, on average saw 5 additional bookings and 20% more revenue, compared to those that did not allow us to reduce their prices.

Similarly, those that took our advice on where their base price should sit earned on average 13 more bookings and 34% more revenue than owners who set their own pricing.

Short Breaks

We are seeing demand for short stays consistently grow year on year.

At Coast & Country Cottages, 26% of our bookings in 2023 were for short breaks. This is a significant 3% rise from 23% in 2022.

Our annual survey revealed that 53% of Brits plan to go on multiple UK holidays and short breaks in 2024.

Did you know?

By accepting multiple bookings in a week, you could achieve on average 6 more bookings than those that restrict their properties to just one booking a week. Being flexible with the length of a customer’s stay and accepting bookings right up to the departure date will ensure more bookings in the long run.

Last minute bookings

Last minute bookings are no longer the exception, they’re the rule. Since COVID and with the weather typically unpredictable, people are hesitant to commit early, preferring to be spontaneous and make the most of sunny weather by the coast.

At Coast & Country Cottages, 35% of our bookings in 2023 were made within 4 weeks of the holiday start date. 

Google searches for ‘last minute holidays’ have experienced a year-on-year growth of 130%. Searches for ‘last minute holidays Devon’ have remained high with over 1,000 searches per month. Popular locations such as Salcombe, Brixham, and Dartmouth all feature frequently in searches.

Accept Pets

South Devon Holiday Let Market Insights Report - A Golden Retriever on the beach

At Coast & Country Cottages, we’ve seen a 60% increase in searches for pet-friendly holidays since 2019. Not only that, but properties accepting pets earn an average of 3 more bookings and 17% more revenue than those that don’t accept pets.

We’ve also seen an increase in search numbers for more specific terms such as ‘dog-friendly cottages in Devon by the sea’, ‘dog-friendly cottages in Devon with enclosed garden’ and ‘cottages in Salcombe dog-friendly’. 

Consider Sustainability

As well as reducing your running costs and future-proofing your business, considering your environmental impact can be a great way to accelerate your bookings. 

74% of the UK public say they want travel companies to offer more sustainable choices, 65% would prefer to stay in accommodation that has a sustainable certification, and 43% would be willing to pay more for sustainable options. 

We have seen an increased demand for properties with EV charge points. Holiday cottages with EV charging facilities receive around 170 searches per month on Google. Currently, only 5% of our properties have an EV charger, which means there’s a great chance for owners to make their accommodation stand out from the crowd.

Value-adding property features

For owners looking to optimise their holiday let income, here are our most popular searches and booking features in 2023:

Garden/Outdoor spaces

We found that 32% of guests consider a property’s garden or outdoor space when booking a holiday. Properties that have outdoor spaces should utilise these by providing outdoor seating so guests can enjoy al fresco dining in the South Devon sunshine!


27% of guests consider good wifi or technology when booking a property. By having good Wi-Fi, owners can earn 26% more revenue per year compared to those who don’t.

Hot tubs

Bookings for properties with hot tubs were up 104% compared to 2022 and 167% compared to 2019. This proves that luxury amenities continue to be popular with holidaymakers. Properties with a hot tub can earn an average of 37% more per year than those that don’t.

Marketing your holiday home

Domestic tourism boosts the UK economy by an estimated £28 billion each year, with over £7 billion of this spent in the South West, predominantly in rural areas. In 2021, short-term letting tourism also supported over 124,000 jobs in the South West.

So how do you ensure your holiday home stands out from the crowd? As part of the Sykes Holiday Cottages family, our brands have access to national, industry-leading marketing exposure. 

Here are some of our marketing insights for 2023 and ways we have secured bookings for our owners:

  • We spent £24 million on marketing in 2023.
  • We continue to dominate Google search results, with a 43.7% market share amongst the four largest competitors in the industry.
  • We had over 46 million website visitors to our Sykes Holiday Cottages website, which features all our Coast & Country properties, in 2023.
  • The Sykes Cottages brand is growing with over 3.3 million searches in the last 12 months.
  • We’ve run several successful booking initiatives in 2023, including our low deposit payment and flexible cancellation schemes.
  • We’re always expanding our wide network of partner sites, like Airbnb and, giving owners the best opportunity to be seen across multiple platforms.

How Coast & Country Cottages can help you

Do you own a holiday home in South Devon, or are you thinking of letting your second home? 

Our 2024 Market Insights Report is an essential resource, filled with useful statistics and pointers for letting your holiday property, whether you’re an experienced owner or just thinking of buying. For a full copy of the report please contact us on, call 01548 802171 or visit the Let Your Cottage page on our website.

If you’d like to find out more about whether we’re a good fit for you and your holiday home, one of our New Property Consultants would love to visit your property and give an honest appraisal of its rental potential. Or, if you are thinking of investing in a property and would like some free advice, we can help with that too!. 

If you’re looking for more useful owner blogs, read our Holiday Letting Advice Guide for everything you need to know about holiday letting with Coast & Country. Unsure on where to start with holiday property management? Read our blog on choosing the right service for your cottage.