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Tourism in the UK

Tourism is one of the largest industries in the UK, accounting for 2.9% of UK Gross Value Added and worth approximately £85.6 billion in 2006* comprising:

Spending by Overseas Residents 

£ billion

Visits to the UK

16.0

Fares to UK carriers*

2.9


Spending by Domestic Tourists

£ billion

Trips of 1+ nights 

21.0 

Day Trips*

44.8

Rent for Second Ownership*

1.0

* Note that 2007 data for the overall value of tourism and components marked with an asterisk will be available towards the end of 2008
 
Inbound Tourism to the UK in 2007 (provisional estimates): 

  • The 32.6 million overseas visitors who came in 2007 spent £16.0 billion in the UK.  2007 was the first year to see a decline in the number of inbound visitors to the UK and nominal inbound visitor spending since 2001
  • Total visits for 2007 are 32.558 million, a 0.5% decrease compared with 2006, with a decrease of 0.3% in spending to £15.955 billion
  • In 2007 the UK ranked sixth in the international tourism earnings league behind the USA, Spain, France, Italy and China
  • The top five inbound markets for the UK in 2007 were:                           

Country

Visits (000)

USA

3,587

Germany

3,385

France

3,323

Irish Republic

2,975

Spain

2,158

Country

Spend (£m)

USA

2,554

Germany

1,217

Irish Republic

969

France

865

Spain

848

 


UK Domestic Overnight Tourism:   

  • In 2007 UK residents took: 
    53.7 million holidays of one night or more spending £11.5 billion 
    18.7 million overnight business trips spending £4.5 billion 
    47.8 million overnight trips to friends and relatives spending £4.8 billion  

Employment: 

  • Over 2 million jobs are sustained by tourism activity in the UK, either directly or indirectly
  • There are an estimated 1.45 million jobs directly related to tourism activity in the UK, some 5% of all people in employment in the UK
  • Approximately 132,400 of these jobs are in self-employment                          

 

Total

(millions)

Tourism-related 

(millions)

Total Employment

29.2

1.45

Employee Jobs

25.2

1.32

Self-Employment

3.8

 0.13


Source: Office for National Statistics and DCMS - figures relate to June 2007

Accommodation:  

  • In 2007, average room occupancy for all serviced accommodation throughout the UK was 62% (up 1 percentage points from 2006). Average bedspace occupancy was 48% (an increase of 1 percentage points on 2006)   

Source: Tourism Trade

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