The IPS figures for May have been released for May, although not as impressive as previous months, they still show a 5% increase in inbound tourism revenue. As monthly figures can vary considerably, the figures for the last three months and the YTD figures give an better indication of overall trends and these remain extremely strong with revenue up 14%. Holiday visitor numbers are up 20% so far this year as visitors take advantage of the drop in the value of the pound. Business visits continue to struggle which probably reflects the uncertainty associated with Brexit.
Interestingly, visitor numbers from Europe are only up marginally while visitor numbers from long-haul destinations are up significantly. Again the value of the pound has resulted in much larger savings for long-haul visitors who spend much more on a holiday to the UK. YTD figures put the UK second in Europe in terms of tourism growth rates, something not seen for a long time and that, while the fall in the value of the pound makes overseas destinations more expensive, outbound tourism is still recording low growth.