British tourism set for a bumper 2018
British tourism is set for another bumper year in 2018 following a record 40.3 million UK international arrivals in 2017, according to new research.
Last year proved a record year for tourism in the UK with international arrivals to the country increasing by 4.6 per cent from 38.5 million in 2016 to 40.3 million in 2017, according to leading data and analytics company GlobalData.
Konstantina Boutsioukou, consumer analyst at GlobalData, said: “The Pound’s Brexit drop has rendered business and leisure trips to the UK more affordable, luring a growing number of European travellers.
“Inbound flows from European countries such as Germany, France, Spain, Ireland and Romania have increased steadily with arrivals from the US and Australia experiencing rapid growth.”
As the number of tourists visiting the British Isles grows, travel businesses are seeking to diversify their offerings by developing new programmes that can captivate the attention of visitors. At the same time, destinations are also introducing themes promoting the key attractions that they have to offer.
“For instance, Visit Scotland is promoting the ‘Year of young people for 2018’ – the country is promoting events, activities, festivals and suggested road trips for young people, but also those who are ‘young at heart’,” explained Boutsioukou.
“Tourism Ireland has also launched a new campaign called ‘Wild Atlantic Way’ promoting the longest coastal drive in the world, as well as numerous other activities taking place across six regions in the country. As for Wales, they celebrate the ‘Year of the Sea’, also promoting three new national coastal routes through the castle country and mountainous regions.”
The recent British Tourism & Travel Show featured a ‘New Destination Europe’ area, where exhibitors from European countries had the opportunity to participate. Given the great importance of Europe both as a tourist source and tourist destination market for the UK, the exhibition allowed players from the continent to share their knowledge with the overall aim of better serving travellers.
Boutsioukou said key issues discussed at the event included the changing nature of group travel, the role of technology and social media in effectively marketing to different cohorts and the rise of the short getaways both to domestic and international destinations.
“Brexit and its impact on travel flows and trending types of tourism such as eco and adventure will also have a prominent role in discussions,” she added.