Monday, 11 January 2016

October record for international visits to UK

THE NUMBER of international visits to the UK has continued to set new records, according to figures released by the Office for National Statistics.

There were almost 3.4 million international visits in October this year, a 12% increase compared to the same month in 2014.

Overall, in the 10-months of the year-to-date, the number of overseas visits was 30.5 million, 4% higher than for the same period last year, indicating that this year is firmly on track to be another record-breaker for overseas visits to Britain.

Foreign tourists also spent 9% more in October than they did in the same month last year, spending close to £2 billion and setting a new record. Overall, spending by visitors for the first 10-months of 2015 was £18.4 billion.

Another record for October was the 14% increase in visits from the EU15 markets, the UK’s largest visit-generating region, with 1.9 million tourists. In the 10-months to date there were close to 17 million visits from these markets, a 2% increase on the same period in 2014.

Visits from North America – Canada and the US – were up by 7% in the year-to-date.

VisitBritain Director Patricia Yates said: ‘It’s really encouraging to see the increases in visits and spend for October, particularly coming on the back of the Rugby World Cup (RWC). We’re working hard to drive tourism across all our nations and regions and with almost half a million international visitors having attended RWC matches and events across 11 host cities, including places which wouldn’t necessarily be on the immediate radar for many overseas visitors, we can be confident that the economic benefits from October’s record results are being felt across many of our regions.’

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