Detailed full-year inbound tourism figures released today reveal 2014 was a record year for both Australian visitor nights and spend in the UK.
The latest International Passenger Survey figures show Australian visitors spent £1.224 billion (A$2.32bn) in Britain last year, up 3% on 2013 and a new record. Australian visitors spent 15 million nights in Britain, a growth of 1% on 2013 and also a new record. There were 1.057 million inbound visits from Australia to Britain.
The Australian market retains its rankings as Britain’s 4th most valuable international source market for visitor spend, 5thfor visitor nights and 10th for visits. In the five years since 2009, Australian visits have grown by 15.9%, visitor spend has increased by 43% while visitor nights have grown by 12.7%.
Globally the figures show overseas visitors spent a record £21.7 billion during 2013, 3% up on 2013 while overall inbound visits reached a record 34.8 million, up by nearly 2 million – 6% – on 2013.
Sally Balcombe, Chief Executive at VisitBritain said: “Inbound tourism is increasing year-after-year, with Britain now achieving its second consecutive annual record, with further growth forecast for 2015.
“The marketplace for global tourism is getting tougher, but the Government’s GREAT campaign and VisitBritain’s successful global marketing activity has meant that tourism is increasingly becoming an essential part of the wider success of our economy.”
Mark Haynes marketing manager Australia, VisitBritain says: ‘‘Australia is a billion pound market for Britain with Aussie travellers yet again smashing records for spend and visitor nights to Britain in 2014.’’
Australians are true regional explorers, visiting all parts of the UK during their holidays. In September and October 2015, 11 cities in England and Wales will host one of the world’s greatest sporting events – the Rugby World Cup and we continue to celebrate Scotland’s Year of Food & Drink. In 2016 there will be even more reasons for Australians to visit regional Britain with a host of literary anniversaries to celebrate, including Shakespeare400, along with Wales’ Year of Adventure. With direct and flexible flights from regional Australia to regional Britain we expect these events and celebrations will continue to drive growth in travel beyond London.’