Bumper year forecast

Britain poised for record number of tourists in 2020

Asian tourists

Bookings from Asia are up by as much as a third (pic: Terry Murden)

Britain is poised for a bumper invasion of tourists next year, according to forecasts.

VisitBritain, the national tourism agency, says 2020 is set to be a record year with spending by overseas visitors predicted to reach £26.6 billion, a 6.6% increase on 2019 which is expected to top out at £25bn. 

The number of overseas visits to the UK is forecast to rise in 2020 to 39.7 million, the highest ever, and up 2.9% on 2019 which is expected to see about 38.5 million visits by year end. 

Looking longer-term, during the last decade inbound tourism visits to the UK have grown 33% when comparing 2010 to the 2020 forecast and spending by 58%.

VisitBritain director Patricia Yates said: “Tourism is one of the UK’s most valuable export industries and these results show our continued ability to attract international visitors in a fiercely competitive global market.

“We are seeing success in growing tourism from our long-haul, high-spending markets including the US, our largest and most valuable inbound market, and from markets that are crucial for our future such as China.

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