The World Cup is officially kicking off this week and research from Travel Republic has revealed some of the extreme lengths Brits will go to in order to watch the World Cup both at home and away; half of Brits will watch the matches when 'off sick' from work and one in five will pay for their family to be on an excursion whilst the match is on.

When it comes to holidays, 45% of Brits planned their travel around the World Cup, with almost a third preferring to wait until the World Cup has finished to book last minute and 21% admit to booking once England have dropped out in the past. Moreover, where Brit’s go is just as important; just under a third (31%) of Brits cite the importance of the hotel having screens to show the football and good Wi-Fi around the pool to be able to watch the matches (29%).

The destination is also key as a quarter of Brits admit to travelling to a different country to be able to watch the matches at a sociable hour. The World Cup however doesn’t just affect football fans. A third of non-football fans admit to making room in their suitcase for football paraphernalia on behalf of their football enthusiast partner and half are made to get to the pub early to get the best seat to watch the game.

Wesley Marley, head of sales for the company (and a self-confessed football fan), said: “For many of our customers, the World Cup is an important event that cannot be missed. I can easily relate to this, as I chose the most expensive flight of the day to ensure I arrived in time to watch a match, when going on holiday. Luckily many popular holiday destinations take the World Cup just as seriously as in the UK making it easy to enjoy the World Cup and also provide entertainment for the non-football fans in the family.”

Regionally, adults in Wales are the most likely to ‘pull a sickie’ for the World Cup (59%) whilst those in Yorkshire are most likely to use the majority of their annual leave during the sporting event (53%). At 32%, those in the North East are most likely to travel to a different country to watch the matches whilst those from the Midlands are the most likely to send their family on an excursion during the matches (28%).

In celebration of the UK’s love of football, both at home and away on holiday, the online travel agent has created a series of helpful destination guides, including some of the best locations to enjoy the football aboard and where best to soak up the sights for the 90 minutes the match is on.

The guides can be viewed at travelrepublic.co.uk/blog/holiday-football-guide

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