The UK, like most countries, have both inbound and outbound tourism. There’s also a number of British families and couples choosing staycations – holidays in Britain, just another part of the country.
Here’s some quick stats on the UK tourism sector to get you excited about promoting some travel affiliate programs for the UK.
- 10% of tourists traveling to Britain in 2018 were from the USA.
- Americans spend more too – nearly double the rest of the top ten destinations people travel to the UK from…
- Two-thirds of tourists are from EU member states
- 17% of Brits booked an overseas holiday
- 26% of UK holidaymakers had their vacation in another part of Britain
- Those who stayed at home booked City Breaks (weekends and theatre breaks are popular), followed by…
- Countryside breaks (these are usually Scotland or Wales)
- 8% of Brits booked a cruise
- 5% booked a coach holiday
- Just 4% chose adventure holidays
- The most popular type of holiday was a package holiday abroad. Mostly a beach holiday and all-inclusive.
(For The Yanks) Understanding the Geography because Britain is a Country of Four Countries
- Northern Ireland (not the Republic of Ireland)
England gets the lion’s share of tourists because that’s home to the Royal Family and the Crown Jewels. Plus, London’s the Capital City that never sleeps.
It also benefits from VisitBritain.com and VisitEngland.com. Both sites are official trading names for the British Tourist Board.
The shop on Visit Britain actually has an affiliate program paying 25% commission on the 350 products sold there. However, they only pay affiliates quarterly, and there are many more high quality UK travel affiliate programs that pay monthly!
Most international tourists arrive at one of London’s airports, and in fact, London is where the majority of tourists travel to on holiday.
However, Scotland, Wales Northern Ireland, and rural England are attractive for their scenery, wildlife, and rustic lifestyle. There’s also various festivals take place in different regions throughout the year which means that travel affilaite programs for the UK could be profitable for more than just travel bloggers!
In fact, I personally have a big interest in the Viking era, and the largest Viking festival in the world takes place in the UK. This is just one example of how to leverage these affiliate programs in a non-travel website.
Travel Website Ideas for the UK
The travel industry is huge, and there are thousands of ways to find a niche audience. Here are some basic ideas to start off with:
- Package holidays
- UK city tours
- UK Cruises
You can also cater to different types of holidays such as done for you packages for a specific type of person. Pub crawls, historical sites, ancient cultures, or even tours learning English could be fun audiences to target.
For those creating their own holiday plans, you can partner with
- Rail operators
- Coach firms
- Airport transfer services
- Flight booking engines
- Hotels or B&Bs
With four countries for people to travel to and over 280 airports for Brits to fly long-haul to international destinations, there’s plenty of room for UK travel affiliates to make money promoting flights, car rentals, hotel bookings, mini-breaks and city breaks within the UK, Europe, and internationally.
Plus, for more ideas, you can check out some Australian travel affiliate programs, and see if the companies there spark more ideas of what you can promote on your website.
12 Travel Affiliate Programs for the UK
- Alton Towers Resort
- Park Holiday Resorts
- Show and Stay
- Globelink International Travel Insurance
- Logi Travel
- Olivers Travels
- Shearings Holidays
- Rail Discoveries
- Discount London
- Vroom Vroom Vroom
1. Alton Towers Resort
Alton Towers is the UK’s largest theme park, catering to families with kids of all ages, and the adventurous thrill-seekers too.
There’s rides for toddlers, roller coasters for older kids and white knuckle rides for the adults in the family too as well as indoor and outdoor waterparks.
They even have a roller coaster restaurant…
For staying over, the resort has four on-site hotels and have just recently expanded the accommodation range to include star-gazing pods too – sort of like a camping experience.
Commissions are up to 5% and the average order value is £300.
What you won’t earn commissions on is room only deals, ticket only deals or annual pass bookings. Cookies last for 30-days but if you’re unlucky enough not to be the last click referrer (your referral leaves your site and books through another affiliates link), they have an assist payment where you’ll still get £1.00.
2. Park Holiday Resorts
Park Holiday Resorts operate 30 holiday park sites across the Southern part of the UK. They’re a popular destination for Brits holidaying at home.
These are budget-friendly caravan parks with kids’ entertainment on-site and centrally located for fun family days out too.
Parks Holidays have three business areas…
- Static caravan hire
- Holiday home ownership
- Camping and pitch hire
Family caravan hire is the most popular and where you’ll be able to earn commissions of 5%. Not on the holiday home sales as the cookies are set for 30-days.
The Park Holiday Resorts affiliate program is run on Affiliate Window.
3. Show and Stay
Show and Stay is part of HolidayExtras.co.uk. It’s focused on London Theatre Breaks.
The average order value is £400 and they pay affiliates a 6% commission on all sales, provided it includes a hotel stay.
If a customer only buys discount tickets without booking an overnight stay, there’s no commission. But, when a room is booked, your commission is on all the upsells too including meals, attraction tickets, and rail fares.
Focus your marketing towards package deals and not cheap theatre tickets to avoid your referrals buying discount tickets and clicking no to everything else.
Payments are made twice monthly and there is support available to help with your campaigns.
4. Globelink International Travel Insurance
Travel insurance is big business for tourists leaving and entering Britain. Insurance products are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Most brokers or partners selling insurance partner with travel agency brands and independent travel agencies.
With Globelink, they’re happy to work with travel bloggers and pay you up to 20% commissions with payments made monthly by PayPal or bank transfer.
They’ll even give you a WordPress Plugin letting you sell insurance from your site.
5. Logi Travel
Here, you get a complete suite of travel products that you can tailor to suit your promotions.
You can deep link and you can also use the XML data feed to tailor your own suite of products to suit various locations or types of trips, such as City Breaks in London, Paris, or Rome, and there’s multi-center travel packages too.
There’s also all-inclusive packages to popular destinations including Spain, Tenerife, and the Canary Islands.
There are adult-only packages so it could be possible to build a UK affiliate site targeting the club 18 – 30 groups or perhaps a couple’s escapes website promoting adult only beach holidays or cruises.
6. Olivers Travels
Olivers Travels only cater to luxury accommodation. While they are international, they have a number of properties, including castles and country manors to rent in secluded areas around all regions of the UK.
Castles are popular for weddings, whereas the country manors generally attract family gatherings, such as group parties visiting relatives from overseas.
The affiliate program is run on Affiliate Future, but they only pay a flat-fee commission structure. They pay you £100 per booking with an order value up to £4,000 and £125 over that.
In percentage terms, that’s only 2.5% commissions and capped at £125. However, you can discuss a percentage pay across all sales with them directly.
Worth considering when you have a good volume of traffic being sent their way.
Omio was formerly known as GoEuro. It’s a travel booking engine for flights, trains, and coaches. This is ideal for budget holidaymakers who know (or with your help) can put their own package together.
Using Omio people can find cheaper travel tickets and/or book budget accommodation. You can have more than the one affiliate program. One for accommodation and the other for transport tickets to get from A to B.
There are two groups of travelers to consider for travel-only deals. Bachelorette and bachelor parties are known in the UK as hen nights (for the ladies) and for the lads, it’s a stag do.
Amsterdam is a hotbed for hen and stag group visits. Some will book independently to stay within budget, others may do the mini-cruise.
You could use the Omio affiliate program to earn 4% commissions on bookings.
Also, partnering with a ferry affiliate program such as DFDS seaways (on Affiliate Window paying 5% commission) could let you offer mini cruises from the UK to various European destinations.
For some, it could be cheaper. Or just more convenient to hop on a ferry.
8. Shearings Holidays
Shearings Holidays are a coach tour company providing city breaks throughout the UK and packaging their coach travel with international cruises and flights.
They’re what’s called an escorted travel agent as they have tour guides and coach drivers accompanying passengers to the destinations and providing travel itineraries for each location.
Tours are anywhere from 2-day mini-breaks to 24-day full excursions.
They have a range of brands that include their main one – Shearings Holidays, and the Grand Tourer brand which is a more upmarket coach tour company catering to luxury coach travel and stays at unique hotels across the UK.
There’s also a few hotel brands operated by Shearings. These include Bay Hotels, Coast and Country Hotels and Country Living Hotels, which has two hotels – Bath and Harrogate.
These hotels were revamped in conjunction with the Country Living Magazine – a bestselling UK magazine so if you want to promote the Bath and Harrogate Country Living Hotels, get familiar with the audience of CountryLiving.com.
The two of these hotels were designed for that audience demographic.
Shearings Holidays runs the affiliate program on Awin.com paying 3% to 5% commissions depending on the type of holiday booked. Cookies are set for 30-days.
Hoppa.com is an international airport transfer company. Their affiliate program lets you deep-link to any airport letting your customers choose how they want to travel.
Options include private airport transfers in luxury vehicles, minibuses for small groups and coaches for larger groups or for single-seat bookings to any city around the UK.
Customers can pre-book everything online then arrive and have their transfer waiting to take them to their hotels.
The commission rate is 5% on all bookings, and you’ll get creatives to help as well as regular vouchers and coupon codes to keep your audience updated on the latest deals.
The Hoppa affiliate program is run on Affiliate Window, has 30-day cookies and you’ll get a dedicated affiliate account manager for assistance if you need it.
10. Rail Discoveries
The UK is filled with remarkable scenery and the best way to experience it is cross-country by rail.
Rail Discoveries have various rail vacations catering to a variety of budgets.
Similar to Shearings Holidays, Rail Discoveries provide an escorted service. There’s a tour manager travels along with the group and is on-site at the hotels.
Itineraries are included for each location the trains stop at, there’s information about the area provided and some time to explore before boarding the train for the next leg of the journey.
The Rail Discoveries affiliate program runs on Affiliate Window and has two payment structures.
The first is commission per sale that pays between 4% to 6% and the second is a pay per lead model where you’ll be paid £0.50 when a referral requests a brochure.
There’s a 30-day cookie and the average order value is £1,500.
11. Discount London
There’s always plenty to do in Britain’s capital city. Discount London makes those experiences easier on the pocket.
Customers get discounts on top London attractions including the London zoo, London Eye, Tower of London and discount entry to London’s Palaces as well as City Sightseeing tours on open-top buses.
There’s even discounts for restaurants throughout London.
You could run an entire site devoted to events in London selling discount entry, hotel deals, travel deals and discounts for eating out – just focused on London alone.
With Discount London, your customers get up to 25% off attractions and you earn from 5% to 20% on all sales.
12. Vroom Vroom Vroom
V2B Travel based in Australia is the marketing company powering the VroomVroomVroom.com car and motorhome search engine.
In the UK, they are partnered with some of the leading rental firms for motorhomes including:
- Just Go
- Amber Leisure
- Pure Motorhomes
- Bunk Campers
For anyone interested in self-catering on a budget and exploring more than one city during their time in the UK, hiring a car and staying at different B & Bs across the country each night, or renting a motorhome lets them explore more.
Check out this video of a road trip across three countries in Britain in just 9 days. (The camper here is from QuirkyCampers.co.uk)
Commissions are 30% and payments are made to PayPal on the 15th of each month.