VisitBritain Week - Forward Bookings to UK Healthy


It's VisitBritain week on - everyday we'll be revealing some fascinating information about Chinese visitors to the UK, as well as talking to representatives of the tourism organisation, and considering how British businesses could benefit from learning more about their guests.

Yesterday, we reported that recently released statistics show August to be a record-breaking month for inward tourism to the UK.

Today, we've got even better news for the future!

VisitBritain's research shows that forward bookings from China to the UK have increased by nearly one quarter.

The data, from ForwardKeys, covers flight tickets until December of this year compared with last year, and demonstrates a rise of 24 percent.

There are several reasons that might be behind this increase. Firstly, the weakness of the British currency is making visits to the UK much more affordable to overseas visitors.

There is also thought to be growing demand amongst Chinese tourists to explore the UK, and to experience British culture first-hand.

The work that VisitBritain have done to market the country to Chinese people is also understood to have had a positive impact on the number of inbound tourists.

The UK does, however, have some way to go until it beats France! In October, we revealed that Britain still receives under a third of the annual visitor numbers from China as France does.

The reason for this is partly that a visitor coming to the UK from China needs a visa that is just valid here. However, the same visitor travelling to France will receive a visa that is valid in all 25 other member of the Schengen Area, too. So trips to Schengen countries can arguably be more cost effective and varied that trips to the UK.

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