The latest International Passenger Survey figures have just been released for Q3 last year. In terms of expenditure, European visitors spent 7% less and visitors from the rest of the world spent a whopping 26% less, that despite weaknesses in Sterling! Whilst we continue to have some reservations about the accuracy of the IPS, nevertheless they are the best indicators we have at present.
Inbound visitor numbers were down 3% to 10.8m and expenditure was down 15% to £7.2bn . A little bit of good news...VFR travel increased by 1%, while business visits increased by 6%. Visitors from North America were up 9%. Flipside, outbound tourism numbers were up 1% to 24.2m in Q3 and expenditure was up 3% to £16.4bn. So despite all the other upside down issues that we face at this crucial moment in Global, as well as UK politics, the UK consumer still sees travel overseas as an essential.