Terror attacks mean growth in UK inbound arrivals will slow down

Terror attacks mean growth in UK inbound arrivals will slow down

Growth in the number of arrivals to the UK is expected to stagnate in 2018, following a series of terror attacks, according to research for World Travel Market London – the leading global event for the travel industry – released today (Tuesday 7 November) at WTM London.

The attacks in London and Manchester mean that growth in those cities will lag behind the rates seen in other UK cities, reveals the top 100 City Destination Ranking WTM London Edition, by Euromonitor International.

The UK had 35.6 million inbound arrivals in 2016, and is expected to see strong growth in 2017.

“Brexit, and the subsequent fall of the pound, have had a major impact on the travel industry in the UK, with arrivals growing strongly by 5.2% in 2017, while outbound departures are forecast to decelerate in 2017 as UK consumers have less money to spend abroad,” said report.

“With the terrorist attacks in London and Manchester, arrivals growth is expected to slow in 2018 to 2.6%.”

The report predicted that London will see growth of 3.4% year-on-year in 2017, rising from 19.19 million inbound arrivals to 19.84 million.

Manchester, which had 1.2 million inbound arrivals in 2016, will see that figure grow by 3.7% year-on-year in 2017.

However, other cities which have not been affected by terrorism will grow at a faster rate in 2017, the report predicted.

Edinburgh – the second ranked UK city with 1.6 million inbound arrivals – will grow at 4.8%; Birmingham (1.2m) will grow by 4.4%; and Glasgow (688,000) will grow by 4.5%.

Nonetheless, the report notes that London is relatively unscathed compared with other European cities hit by terrorists – especially Paris, which saw numbers fall after two high-profile attacks in 2015. London is still expected to continue growing, reaching 22.34 million in 2020, and 25.80 million by 2025.

“It seems the size and nature of any attack, as well as the size of the city and local response, has a clear impact on travellers’ decision-making,” noted the report.

In the long-term, the report forecasts the UK will see 40.6 million inbound arrivals by 2020 – just surpassing VisitBritain’s target of 40 million by that date – thanks to strong inbound demand from Europe, North America and Asia because of the pound’s depreciation post-Brexit.

WTM London, Senior Director, Simon Press said: “Tourists are bound to take precautions when considering where to travel in the wake of any attack, but the robust response of Londoners and Mancunians this year has helped to mitigate damage to the tourism trade in those cities.

“This report does predict a lower growth rate next year but it is heartening to see that numbers will still rise despite terrorism, thanks to the resilience of those cities and campaigns by their tourist boards.”


About World Travel Market

World Travel Market (WTM) portfolio comprises five leading B2B events across four continents generating more than $7bn of industry deals. The five events are:


WTM London, the leading global event for the travel industry, is the must-attend three-day exhibition for the worldwide travel and tourism industry. Around 51,500 senior travel industry professionals, government ministers and international media visit ExCeL – London every November generating around £2.8 billion of travel industry contracts. http://london.wtm.com/. Next event: 6-8 Nov 2017 – London.


International Golf Travel Market (IGTM) now in its 20th edition, is the meeting place for the global B2B golf travel community. More than 600 golf tourism suppliers join 350 pre-qualified buyers and 100 international press for four days of unmissable pre-scheduled appointments, exclusive networking opportunities and invaluable industry and trend updates. Taking place in a different destination every year, IGTM brings together 1,400 golf tourism professionals from over 65 countries. http://igtm.wtm.com/. Next event: 11-14 Dec 2017 – Cannes.


World Travel Market Latin America now in its fifth edition attracts about 9,000 unique senior executives. The event generates US$ 370 million of new business. Taking place in Sao Paulo Brazil, this show attracts a global audience to meet and shape the direction of the travel industry. More than 7,000 unique visitors attend the event to network, negotiate and discover the latest industry news. http://latinamerica.wtm.com/. Next event: 3-5 April 2018 – Sao Paulo.


World Travel Market Africa launched in 2014 in Cape Town, South Africa. Nearly 5,000 travel industry professionals attend Africa’s leading inbound and outbound travel and tourism market. WTM Africa delivers a proven mix of hosted buyers, media, pre-scheduled appointments, on-site networking, evening functions and invited travel trade visitors. http://africa.wtm.com/. Next event: 18-20 April 2018 – Cape Town.


About Arabian Travel Market (ATM) is the leading, international travel and tourism event in the Middle East for inbound and outbound tourism professionals. ATM 2017 attracted almost 40,000 industry professionals, agreeing deals worth US$2.5bn over the four days. The 24th edition of ATM showcased over 2,500 exhibiting companies across 12 halls at Dubai World Trade Centre, making it the largest ATM in its 24-year history.  www.arabiantravelmarketwtm.com Next event 22-25 April 2018 – Dubai.


About Reed Exhibitions

Reed Exhibitions is the world’s leading events business, enhancing the power of face to face through data and digital tools at over 500 events a year, in more than 30 countries, attracting more than 7m participants.


About Reed Travel Exhibitions

Reed Travel Exhibitions is the world’s leading travel and tourism event’s organiser with a growing portfolio of more than 22 international travel and tourism trade events in Europe, the Americas, Asia, the Middle East and Africa. Our events are market leaders in their sectors, whether it is global and regional leisure travel trade events, or specialist events for meetings, incentives, conference, events (MICE) industry, business travel, luxury travel, travel technology as well as golf, spa and ski travel. We have over

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World Travel Market brings the travel industry together through world leading events, content and digital tools, that make it easier for you to find personal and business opportunities and do more effective business.

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