Thomas Cook could be looking to increase number of pre-bookable sunbeds

Thomas Cook says it may consider offering pre-bookable sunbeds at more hotels after a survey suggested one in 10 people are in favour of such a scheme.

Five per cent of holidaymakers who responded to the poll said they “definitely would” pay to reserve a sunbed, while a further five per cent said they “probably would”.

This summer Thomas Cook became the UK’s first package holiday company to offer guests the option of paying to book a specific lounger.

The scheme costs £25 per sunbed for the entire duration of your stay and is currently available at 50 of its hotels.

To help holidaymakers choose the right one for them, sunbeds are displayed on a map featuring a compass to help people work out whether certain areas will be in the sun or shade at different times of the day.

Reserve that perfect beach spot

A Thomas Cook spokesman said: “With 22 million customers, this research shows that more than two million of our holidaymakers want to book a sunbed.

“At the hotels we offer it, around one in 10 sunbeds are available to book so it’s clear we’re on the right track. Perhaps we need to ramp up the roll-out to more hotels.”

The survey of 1,025 UK holidaymakers was commissioned to mark the opening of trade show World Travel Market at the ExCeL exhibition centre in east London on Monday.

Travel firms receive numerous complaints from customers unable to use hotel sunbeds because many are reserved by people leaving towels, books and other belongings on them.

In fact, a number of videos have been posted online showing desperate holidaymakers waiting for hotel pools to open in the early hours of the morning so they can bag a sunbed.

In what has previously been dubbed the ‘Sun-Lounger Olympics’, one video shows visitors getting up at 7am for the mad dash to reserve their favourite poolside spots.

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