In November 2019, we analysed Google search data to reveal that Tallinn, Estonia is Europe’s most sought-after Christmas city, followed by Vienna, Strasbourg, Krakow and... You'll have to read on to find out!
Most searched-for cities
1. Tallinn, Estonia
With over 600 UK searches a year for ‘Christmas in Tallinn Estonia’, Tallinn is the top searched city, suggesting that it’s a favourite for people in the UK to visit over Christmas. Tallinn is also claim to a European Best Destinations award for Best Christmas Market in Europe 2019.
In 2019/2020, the market is open from 15th November 2019 to 7th January 2020. Tallinn is also number one in terms of its cold weather! With average December temperatures ranging from 1° / -5°, don't forget your warmest clothes and be prepared to experience some snow! Nervous about driving in icy conditions? Check out our guide to winter driving.
2. Vienna, Austria
With 590 searches a year for ‘Christmas in Vienna, Austria’, Vienna is undoubtedly front of mind for people in the UK when thinking about Christmas - and not without good reason. Each year, Vienna's architecturally impressive City Hall Square is transformed into a magical Christmas market. Although it's another snowy destination, Vienna is on average a few degrees warmer than Tallinn in December.
3. Strasbourg, France
Coming closely behind Vienna and with the same average December temperature of 5° / 0°, Strasbourg, also known as Capitale de Noël, features one of the longest-running Christmas markets in the world. At Christmas, Strasbourg's medieval old town looks as though it has been lifted straight out of fairy tale illustration. If you're worried about parking - which can be a challenge in old towns at the best of times - our guide to parking in Europe features some tips for parking in France.
4. Krakow, Poland
Another medieval wonderland, Krakow's Christmas market was first established before World War II. There's also a famous Christmas nativity scene competition, which is a must-see if you're there on the first Thursday of December. If you're heading to Krakow, don't forget your snow boots - with average December temperatures ranging from 3° / -4°, you're likely to encounter some snow!
If you're a big fan of Christmas (and the seaside), but not so much the cold, Nice is the perfect winter destination for you. December temperatures are mild, on average, at 13° / 9°. If you're hiring a car, there are plenty of places to visit while based in Nice and many surrounding towns and villages have their own Christmas markets and traditions to discover.
Lucéram, a picturesque mountain village which is a 40-minute drive from Nice, features up to 450 nativity scenes dotted across the village - it's the ultimate daytime activity if you're a fan of treasure hunts! Don't forget to wrap up warm though, as it's cooler up in the mountains than it is in Nice.
6. Bergen, Norway
7. Copenhagen, Denmark
8. Basel, Switzerland
9. Dublin, Ireland
10. Zurich, Switzerland
Hiring a car at Christmas
Europe is a popular destination for ‘fly and drive’ travellers, and with 86.41 million transactions in 2017 between a car rental company and consumers it’s clear this is a popular means of getting around for those visiting the continent.
However, our research showed that despite ‘fly and drive’ holidays being a common choice, one-in-four people are still being caught out by ‘compulsory’ excess insurance at the car rental desk, which has a reputation for being expensive. We compared car hire excess cover prices from five well-known car rental companies to reveal that for a week-long trip to Spain in December, consumers can expect to pay an average of £104 more for single-trip excess cover than if they’d bought an annual policy from insurance4carhire in advance.*
To help you get the most out of your car hire and avoid hidden costs, we've created a guide to car hire hidden costs, which highlights the most commonly concealed costs.
*Research carried out in November 2019 based on Annual Europe cover at £44.99 from insurance4carhire compared with car hire excess cover for a week-long trip in Spain in December with Hertz, Sixt, Avis, Firefly and Goldcar.
This is a marketing article from insurance4carhire.