More young people are to be encouraged to take domestic holidays through a nationwide tourism campaign.
The £2.5 million VisitEngland initiative follows statistics showing that 16-to-34 year olds took almost 1.4 million fewer holidays at home last year compared to a decade ago.
The ‘Join the World – Discover the UK’ digital and social media campaign is launched on Monday.
The tourism body is targeting this ‘lost generation’ using overseas social media influencers and travellers to showcase to their peers the experiences that can only be had on a holiday in the UK.
The campaign is to be run in partnership with the national tourism organisations of Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales and tourism businesses and destination management organisations across the UK.
The push is expected to generate more than one million additional overnight stays with an £80 million boost to the economy.
The campaign kicks off with the unveiling of five short films and images showcasing experiences in London and Yorkshire, Strangford Lough in Northern Ireland, Glasgow and Elan Valley in Wales, through the eyes of international travellers.
These are being promoted across digital and social media channels Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat and digital billboards throughout the UK.
The campaign drives online ‘traffic’ to a hub on www.visitbritain.com/jointheworld featuring blogs and user-generated content showcasing seasonal events, activities and experiences.
Visitors can upload images of their own ‘amazing moments’ on social media using #lovegreatbritain and #loveUK for the chance to feature on the hub.
Short-films created by a French social media influencer on a foodie trip to Northern Ireland and a Canadian influencer on a city-trip to Bristol launch in October.
Tourism minister John Glen said: “There is an incredible amount to see and do across the whole of the UK and we want to inspire more young people to take in our world-class attractions, sites and cities.
“Tourism boosts our economy, creates jobs and supports local businesses. By showcasing the exciting and diverse range of trips on offer I hope it will encourage many more young people to explore the UK.”
VisitBritain/VisitEngland chief executive Sally Balcombe said: “We want young people to take a new look at the sheer diversity and quality of activities and experiences right here on our doorstep and inspire them to book a short-break, boosting seasonal tourism and spreading its economic benefits across the UK.”
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