Britain Sees Record-Breaking Visitor Numbers

Britain is still a top ticket for international travelers, and the city has the numbers to prove it: Figures from the 2013 International Passenger Survey released today reveal a 23 percent boost in tourist spending compared to July 2012. July saw record levels of spend as overseas visitors parted with £2.52 billion, beating the previous monthly record of £2.43 billion set in August 2012.

The results also suggest tourism numbers have fully recovered one year on from the London 2012 Olympic & Paralympic Games, with a record-breaking 1.53 million holiday visits recorded in July this year. Britain welcomed 3.26 million overall overseas visits over the month, up 3 percent from July 2012.

This significant uplift continues the record-breaking trend inbound tourism has been experiencing this year, with tourism businesses across the whole of Britain benefitting from the post-Olympic "bounce." The first seven months of 2013 have seen more holiday visits to Britain than during the same period of time in any previous year, and 4 percent higher than the first seven months of 2012.

Across the first seven months of 2013, Britain saw record tourist spend levels of £11.24 billion, 13 percent higher than the same period in 2012. Over the 12 months to July 2013, there has been record spend of £19.95 billion. Spend per visit was also at record levels in the 12 months to July 2013, with visitors spending an average of £629—7 percent more per visit than in the previous 12 months.

Significantly, July also saw the first positive growth—2 percent more visits than in July 2012—in four months in terms of visits from North America, the market with highest total spend.

The "Rest of World" markets (those outside Europe or North America) also continued to break records, with visits up 9 percent in July and 11 percent over the first seven months of the year. For the first time these markets have generated more than 5 million visits over a rolling 12 month period.