Domestic boom predicted as US to UK flight searches jump 22%

Domestic boom predicted as US to UK flight searches jump 22%

Metasearch site Cheapflights.co.uk is predicting a British tourism boom post-Brexit after flight searches from the US to the UK jumped 22% in the past four weeks.

The British Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association (BVRLA) echoes the view, predicting a surge in demand for rental cars this summer.

Cheapflights has also seen a 33% jump in searches to the UK from Canada, a 27% rise for flights from Italy, a 26% rise from Germany and 14% rise from China.

There has also been a surge in domestic searches for coastal hotspots such as Newquay (up 21%).

Andrew Shelton, Managing Director of global flight search and travel deals website, Cheapflights.co.uk, said: “Four weeks on from Brexit, there’s evidence of an approaching tourism boom for Britain, fuelled by overseas visitors capitalising on the falling value of the pound.

“A Brinflux of visitors is set to inject confidence and investment into our domestic tourism industry, a sector that employs more than three million people in the UK.

“There’s also evidence of a resurgence of the staycation, which will be welcomed by resorts such as Newquay and Blackpool, who have seen search spikes of 21% and 17% respectively, on average, in the month since the Brexit result.

“However, Brits maintain an encouraging interest in overseas trips and continue to plan travel abroad, perhaps because the feared price hikes for flights to Europe have yet to materialise.

“Searches to New Zealand are up 10% with smaller rises for Spain and Germany and Italy.

“The weak pound is fuelling demand, having made Britain more affordable for many foreign visitors, particularly the Canadians who now get 11% more pound for their dollar than they did immediately prior to the vote, and 20% more than they did this time last year.

“Less tempted by a Britcation are the Russians, whose flight searches to the UK have dropped by 34% over the past four weeks, and our Commonwealth cousins in New Zealand and Australia, which show dips of 6% and 4%.”

Shelton said that in the very first days after the Brexit vote, flight searches from the US to the UK doubled, searches from China jumped 61% and Canada by 49%.

Searches for flights to the UK from EU countries shot up 31% in the same period, with Spain and Italy leading the push, showing increases of 84% and 62% respectively.

“This initial surge has levelled out somewhat but demand remains healthy,” said Shelton.

Meanwhile the BVRLA believes demand for car rental will surge this summer as more Britons react to exchange rate, by taking last-minute holidays in the UK.

Gerry Keaney, chief executive of the BVRLA, said: “In a further boost, the current exchange rate will also attract overseas visitors which can be expected to increased rental demand.

“We urge holidaymakers to look out for the BVRLA logo when renting a car in the UK.”

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