New research commissioned by Holiday Inn® and Holiday Inn Express® (part of InterContinental Hotels Group®), has found that social media, a lack of time, and travel costs, are preventing Brits from sharing ‘in real life’ connections with friends and family from their hometowns.

The study of 2,000 people, conducted by One Poll, revealed the top things Brits miss about their hometowns is the people, with the majority saying they miss being close to family (30%), followed by childhood friends (25%) and the houses they lived in (23%). Whilst the majority (51%) consider their hometown to be the place they grew up, one in three (34%) said it was where they were born, and a quarter (24%) acknowledge it as where their parents live now, showing that home will always be where the heart is.

As many Brits fly the nest to be with their partner (29%), pursue a career (26%), or find peace away from the City (16%), it’s no surprise the average Brit has two towns or cities they call ‘home’, but still the majority (38%) retain the iconic ‘hometown’ status for just one place. One in 12 (4%) have as many as five ‘hometowns’!

‘Memories from childhood’ is what Brits are most likely to miss about their hometown (37%), with nearly two fifths (37%) wanting to relive those moments. Even with this feeling of nostalgia, of those that no longer live in their hometown, nearly half (47%) struggle to get back to visit friends and family as often as they would like, blaming not enough time (51%), cost of travel (37%) and living too far away (36%). Almost a third (32%) said it takes a special occasion for everyone to get together and connect in-person with those they love most.

In a world where technology increasingly dominates how people connect, the results showed that nearly half (48%) rely solely on text messages to keep in touch with family and friends, and over half (53%) use only voice calls. On top of this, some friends and family stay connected with loved ones entirely through social media (33%), and more traditionally by sending letters (9%).

Heather Balsley, Senior Vice President, Global Marketing, Mainstream brands, InterContinental Hotels Group® said: “As we move around more than ever before, staying in touch with the ones we love the most can be challenging. In-person relationships are one of the most important aspects of our lives, yet we can often forget just how crucial our connections with other people are. This is true for both business and pleasure. Our research shows that far too many people rely on social media and digital devices to keep in touch, whilst longing for time together face-to-face. At Holiday Inn® and Holiday Inn Express®, our aim is to be there for our guests to help them connect with those who matter most.”

This study highlights that people aren’t spending enough time connecting in real life with the people that matter most. Holiday Inn® and Holiday Inn Express® recognise the importance of human connection and being there in-person. The new ‘We’re there’ campaign is helping to create #BeThereIRL moments, without the digital divide. With hotels situated across the world in easily accessible locations, guests can connect to those that matter most, and at an affordable price. Guests staying at Holiday Inn® can enjoy a full-service restaurant and bar, Kids Eat and Stay For Free*, and newly refurbished Open Lobby spaces to relax, eat & drink, connect and work. At Holiday Inn Express® the hot and fresh Express Start® breakfast is included with every stay, guest rooms have been upgraded across the estate, and Kids Stay For Free.
Holiday Inn® and Holiday Inn Express® have always had a history of enabling human connections. Since the first hotel opened in Memphis in 1952, Holiday Inn® has played a pivotal role in bringing people together through travel, whether for business or leisure.

With the hotel welcoming millions of guests through its doors, Holiday Inn® and Holiday Inn Express® hotels make travel more accessible for all and are uniquely positioned to help travelers be there and connect with those who matter most to them. Make time to connect in-real-life by visiting or

Top 10 things Brits miss about their hometown
1. The memories they have there (37%)
2. Being close to family (30%)
3. Old or childhood friends (25%)
4. Your old home (23%)
5. Other people you know (16%)
6. Old shops (10%)
7. Famous landmarks (10%)
8. Your favourite pub or club (8%)
9. Your old school (8%)
10. Your favourite restaurant (5%)
Top 10 places Brits consider to be a hometown:
1. Where I live now (71%)
2. Where I grew up as a child (51%)
3. Where I was born (34%)
4. Where I’ve lived for the longest time (27%)
5. Where my parents live now (18%)
6. Where I went to school (16%)
7. Where I went to university (11%)
8. Where my parents grew up (10%)
9. Where I have/ made the most friends (10%)
10. Where I’ve been on holiday frequently (8%)

*Kids aged 17 and under stay for free when sharing their parents’ room. Up to four kids aged 12 and under eat free any time of the day in any Holiday Inn® on-site restaurant.