Portugal has overtaken both France and Italy to become the second most popular holiday spot over the Easter break, according to booking figures from Mainland Spain remained top of the list as the British favourite, while Bulgaria with its low cost reputation entered the Top 10 for the first time. 

Figures for European car hire bookings made during the Easter school holidays for 2013 and 2014 were compared to discover the top new Easter holiday destinations. Only Spain, the Canary Islands, Turkey and Croatia held their 2013 rankings. Portugal was the biggest mover from last year, leaping up from the fourth most popular holiday spot to second, overtaking both France and Italy.

Bulgaria entered the 2014 Top 10 list for the first time, highlighting its surge in popularity as a holiday destination over the last 12 months. Its appearance in the list banished Malta from the top ten, which was the tenth most popular location in 2013.

Gareth Robinson, Managing Director of said: "Bookings in Portugal over the Easter holidays increased by 19% from 2013. Spain is a trusted favourite for a brief sunshine break because the high number of offers available, from flights to accommodation, allows for a cheap holiday. The Canary Islands are always popular around Easter because of their better weather. However this good weather means prices are higher so they always remain in the middle of the chart." 

The Balearic Islands moved up one notch this year, overtaking Cyprus, while the Canary Islands remained in seventh place. 

*Surveyed sample size of 765 for car hire taken during the standard UK Easter half term holidays in 2013 and 2014


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