VISITENGLAND ANNOUNCES DOMESTIC TOURISM FIGURES FOR 2011

VISITENGLAND ANNOUNCES DOMESTIC TOURISM FIGURES FOR 2011

4 April 2012. VisitEngland, the national tourist board, today released figures revealing that over 104 million domestic overnight trips were taken in England last year – an increase of 9 per cent compared to 2010 and the highest number of trips since the survey began in 2006.  Total spend rose by 13 per cent year on year, representing almost £18bn. Holiday trips in particular grew by 6 per cent to 46 million, and holiday spend hit £10bn; an increase of 11 per cent from 2010.  This is the third consecutive year since 2009 that the number of domestic holiday trips has remained above pre-recession levels, indicating that the ‘staycation’ trend is still holding strong.

In terms of location type, 2011 saw an increase across the board – domestic overnight trips to towns, cities and the countryside were all up by just under 14 per cent each compared to 2010, while trips to the seaside were up by just over 11 per cent.

Business trips and trips to visit friends and relatives also showed recovery this year after a number of years of decline, with an increase of 15 per cent and 10 per cent respectively.  However, neither trip type has regained the peak volumes recorded in 2006, before the onset of the recession. 

The national tourist board also released the latest wave of its ‘Staycation Tracker’ research this month, which revealed that the majority of UK residents who took a holiday at home in 2011 had a positive overall experience, 85 per cent reporting it as either ‘excellent’ or ‘very good’. Value for money was also rated highly, with 78 per cent of those polled saying their holiday in England offered ‘excellent’ or ‘very good’ value.  Looking forward, the number of trips taken is expected to be broadly similar in 2012 as in 2011; beyond 2012, the positive domestic holiday experience means that almost half expect they will take more domestic breaks than they used to before the recession.

James Berresford, VisitEngland’s Chief Executive commented:
“2011 was the third consecutive year since 2009 that the number of domestic overnight trips taken in England has been above pre-recession levels.  This, coupled with our recent Day Visits research which revealed that 1.3 billion domestic day trips were taken in England last year, clearly demonstrates that Brits are increasingly inspired to discover the fantastic destination on their doorstep.”

Mr Berresford went on to say
“However, the industry is not without its challenges.  We have seen a double-digit growth in holiday spend and this is part due to inflation, and increased operating costs.  We are fast approaching the Easter break, one of our most important holiday periods of the year, and the news has been saturated with talk of a potential fuel shortage, which could potentially seriously hinder a successful start to the holiday season.  As an industry, we will only overcome challenges such as these, if we continue to work closely together, maximise opportunities that 2012, this special year brings, and support the development of one of the country’s few growth industries." 

-Ends-

Notes to Editors

Great Britain
• The total number of domestic overnight trips taken in Britain last year increased by 9% compared to 2010, representing just under 127 million trips. Total spend rose by 15% to £22.7bn
• Holiday trips in particular taken in Britain last year increased by 7% compared to 2010, representing 58 million trips. Holiday spend rose by 13%, totalling £13bn.

Great Britain Tourism Survey (GBTS)
• GBTS has replaced the UKTS survey, and is jointly sponsored by VisitEngland, VisitScotland and  VisitWales, and carried out by independent research agency TNS-RI – a background to the survey can be found here: http://www.visitengland.org/insight-statistics/major-tourism-surveys/overnightvisitors/index.aspx
• The full 2011 results can be found here: http://www.visitengland.org/Images/December%202011%20-%20Commentary%20of%20results_tcm30-31514.pdf

Staycation Tracker:
• The Staycation Tracker has been commissioned regularly by VisitEngland since the phenomenon first emerged in 2009 - a bumper year for domestic holidays. Over 1,000 adults aged 18+ were interviewed online during February 2012 by independent research agency Olive Insight, about their attitudes to the economic downturn, their holiday behaviour in 2011 and their plans for 2012 and the Olympics. 
• The full report can be found here: http://www.visitengland.org/Images/Staycation%202012%20Feb_for%20website_tcm30-31713.pdf

For more information contact:

Sarah Long, Head of Corporate Communications Tel: 020 7578 1452, Mob: 07500555651, Email: sarah.long@visitengland.org   www.visitengland.org

Emma White, Corporate Communications Executive Tel 020 7578 1471, Email: emmalucy.white@visitengland.org

About VisitEngland
• VisitEngland is the country’s national tourist board. We work in partnership with the industry to develop the visitor experience across England, plan national tourism strategy, grow the value of tourism in England and provide advocacy for the industry and our visitors
• Our work is underpinned by robust research and customer insights. You can access the latest in-depth market intelligence and statistics on www.visitengland.org/insight-statistics   
• VisitEngland markets England under the Enjoy England consumer brand in the domestic market and markets England under the VisitEngland brand internationally 

About England
• England is a unique destination and a real powerhouse in global tourism. It represents 84 per cent of the total UK visitor economy, is worth £97 billion, and supports in excess of 2 million jobs
• More information can be found on www.enjoyengland.com and www.visitengland.org