More than half (54%) of Brit Web users have visited a travel site representing over 14 million people every month, with the over 50s market booming, according to new research.

The figures, from Internet research firm Nielsen//NetRatings, show a growth of 20% visiting travel sites in the last year alone

Significantly, more than four in five (86%) of all British surfers aged over 50 have visited a travel site in the last year, with 1.5 million of them visiting the secure pages of travel websites to book in September 2005

The Nielsen//NetRatings research found that surfers spend on average 40 minutes a month viewing more than 70 pages of content on a variety of travel sites, from airlines to cruise lines, hotels to travel agents

Alex Burmaster, European Internet analyst at Nielsen//NetRatings said: “The figures for the online travel sector continue to impress but what screams out is the staggering percentage of over 50’s who go online for travel. This not only has far-reaching implications for the Internet as a whole but confirms beyond doubt that the web is not just a young person’s tool.”

The most popular travel site with the over 50’s is Expedia, ahead of second-placed Lastminute.com by almost 900,000 visitors during summer 2005.

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