Published on Thursday, July 14, 2016

Brits are making more trips abroad

UK residents made 12.9 million visits abroad in the first three months of this year, a year-on-year jump of 9.8%.

Visits to North America saw the largest increase of 15% to 7 million, while visits to Europe also increased by 13.3%.

However, according to the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics, visits to 'other countries' fell by 2.9%.

Holiday visits rose 10.1% to 7.2 million holidays, but visits to friends or relatives showed the biggest increase (11.4%) while business visits increased by 6.3%.

During the period, Brits spent 133.2 million nights abroad, an increase of 6% compared with 2015.

The rise in visits to North America is reflected in the increase in nights spent in North America by UK residents, which increased 2.5%.

The number of nights spent in Europe saw an increase of 10.3% while nights spent in 'other countries' saw an increase of just 1.5%.

UK residents spent £7.6 billion during visits abroad, up 8.4% compared with £7 billion spent in the same period in 2015.

Expenditure in Europe rose by 13.8%, and spending in North America increased by 9.7% reflecting the increase in visits to this region.

Meanwhile, visits to the UK by overseas residents also continued to rise in the first quarter of 2016.

An estimated 7.5 million visits were made in the first three months, an increase of 7.7% on the 6.9 million visits made during the same period in 2015.

Visits to friends or relatives was the most popular reason for overseas residents visits to the UK, rising by 13.1% to 2.5 million visits.

Holiday visits recorded the largest increase, of 6.5%, from a year earlier while business visits increased by 4.7%.

Total visits from residents of Europe and North America rose by 9.8% and 5.7% respectively while 'other countries' fell by 2.5% to 9 million.

Overall, an estimated total of 50.5 million nights were spent in the UK by overseas residents this quarter, an increase of 5.9%.

The number of nights spent in the UK by overseas visitors from North America increased by 7.6% and those from residents of Europe increased by 9.4% while the number of nights spent by residents of 'other countries' fell by 2.7%.

Overnight visits to London increased by 7.1% to 3.8 million, as did overnight visits to the rest of England, which saw an increase of 9%.

Overnight visits to both Scotland and Wales also rose, up 26.9% and 5.4% respectively.

But despite the rise in visitors, estimated earnings from all visits to the UK fell by 2.2% from £3.8 billion to £3.7 billion.

Spending by residents of 'other countries' during their visits to the UK saw the biggest decrease in, falling by 16% to £1.1 billion.

Spending by residents of Europe and North America increased by 5.2% and 2.7% respectively.


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