Number of leisure tourists to UK starts to fall
The number of leisure tourists visiting the UK dropped by almost 400,000 in the first nine months of the year, compared to 2015, according to figures from the first British Hospitality Association (BHA) Travel Monitor.
However overall the number of visitors is up by 700,000, the increase coming from a 3.8 per cent rise in business travellers and an 8.2 per cent increase in people visiting friends or relatives. There has also been a 5.5 per cent increase in the number of people going abroad in the year to date.
In September the number of outbound tourists rose 10.1 per cent, compared to the same month last year, confounding post-Brexit expectations. Inbound visitors in September were up by 1.3 per cent overall, year-on-year, with business visitors up 6.6 per cent.
Ufi Ibrahim, the BHA’s chief executive, said: “We have launched The BHA Travel Monitor so that we can provide, through detailed and structured analysis of passenger data, a true picture of hospitality and tourism performance.
“For instance our analysis of the increase in the number of incoming people up to the end of September shows that it is not because of more leisure tourists, which might have been the initial impression. There has been no post European referendum tourist surge.”
The BHA Travel Monitor, which will be published monthly and quarterly, also highlights a year-on-year decrease in overall UK holiday spend by overseas visitors.
To read the full report, click here.