AUSTRALIANS are the world's biggest spenders on holidays and the UK is still our preferred destination, a new survey has revealed.
Aussies forked out an average of $3715 a trip, almost double the global average spend on holiday of $1507, according to Visa's latest Global Travel Intentions Survey.
And they're not expected to ease off, with the research predicting travel budgets will remain above $3562 for the next two years.
The global average spend, meanwhile, is only expected to rise to $1928.
Despite the gloomy economic outlook, Australians plan to make at least three international trips between now and 2013, the survey revealed, and intend to spend an average of 16 nights on their next holiday.
The UK remains the most popular destination, with almost a third of Australian respondents (30 per cent) earmarking it as a likely holiday spot in the next two years.
"Of those who want to visit the UK, 27 per cent said they are likely to attend a sporting event," Visa's Ross Jackson said.
"The upcoming London 2012 Olympic Games could be a pull factor and it is an indication that sport tourism is proving to be a growing attraction for today's travellers".
The US ranked a close second (26 per cent), followed by New Zealand (21 per cent).
The survey of almost 12,000 people across 23 countries also found that almost half (47 per cent) intended to arrange their trips themselves by booking directly with hotels and airlines.
The internet has become the preferred travel research tool, with 55 per cent choosing it over more traditional means.
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