VisitEngland reports rise in UK visitor numbers

VisitEngland reports rise in UK visitor numbers

More people took domestic holidays in the first three months of this year than the same period in 2010, according to official figures.

The number of UK overnight trips was up by 5% while trips in England rose by 4%.

Visits to attractions in England also received a boost with a 7% rise in the same period.

The rise in visitor numbers equates to an increase in spend of more than £170 million in the UK.

Leisure travel was the main driver, with an increase of 6% in holidays taken in Britain, and 7% more holiday trips than last year taken in England between January and March, according to VisitEngland.

The overall growth in the quarter came from increased volumes in January (11% more trips than 2010 in Great Britain, and 13% more in England) and February (15% and 14% respectively).

But March suffered in terms of visitor numbers with 8 million domestic tourism trips in Great Britain, an 8% drop from 8.7 million in the same month last year. 

“This could in part be due to the Easter Holidays starting later in April this year compared to 2010 when, in some regions, they started in March, and the prospect of a double bank holiday,” the tourism agency said.

The attractions sector followed the same pattern with January figures up by 19% and February up by 12%, with March falling back by 2%. 

Outdoor attractions, including farms, wildlife attractions and gardens particularly benefited from the more favourable weather in the first quarter, VisitEngland said.

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