VisitEngland forecasts decade of tourism growth

By Phil Davies

More than 500,000 new jobs will be created in tourism over the next decade according to VisitEngland.

The organisation claims this year will kickstart a decade of growth with an exceptionally high number of anniversaries and events happening, including the Rugby World Cup and the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta.

It is thought that much of the growth will come from British people taking more trips and holidays at home, with domestic tourism continuing to account for over 70% of all spending.

The domestic tourist board’s chief executive, James Berresford, said: “England’s tourism industry can look forward to 2015 with confidence.

“There is a cornucopia of stunning events and anniversaries falling this year which we’d expect to drive up visitor numbers right across the country. All this with a tailwind of growing consumer confidence and a falling oil price which cuts the cost of leisure travel, makes us optimistic for a busy year of welcoming more visitors from home and abroad.”

Tourism has been an engine of growth during the recession, with holiday spending at home by Britons jumping by almost a quarter between 2008 and 2013, and overseas visitor spend growing by 29% over the same period.

Tourism minister Helen Grant said: “The continued success of UK tourism is fantastic news, driving growth and supporting 2.6 million jobs in England alone.

“Our tourism strategy is working and is a vital part of the government’s long term economic plan.

“We are committed to keeping up this momentum and doing all we can to help an industry that is predicted to double in size over the next decade.”

Sourced from Travel Weekly

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