UK tourism spend down but jobs up, says ONS

UK tourism spend down but jobs up, says ONS

Tourists spent £5 billion less in the UK at just over £113 billion in 2009 against the previous year, newly released figures show.

Within the reduced total – down from £118 billion in 2008 – an amount totalling £22 billion was spent on items such as air fares and travel agencies’ services by UK residents before travelling abroad.

A figure of £31.7 billion was actually spent by UK residents while abroad, according to the report by the Office for National Statistics.

The £113 billion total comprised £91 billion spent by UK residents and £19 billion spent by overseas visitors.

A further £3 billion was spent on the upkeep of holiday homes.

Domestic spending on tourism trips included £22 billion on overnight visits within the UK and £47 billion on day trips.

The report analyses the ‘tourism ratio’ of the different sectors - the proportion of the domestic supply of tourism-characteristic products that are consumed by tourists.

The highest ratio was for accommodation at 99.8% followed by travel agency services at 94% and air passenger services at 63%. The total direct gross value added of tourism stood at £44.6 billion in 2009, against £46.1 billion in 2008.

The report includes estimates of tourism employment for the UK, and shows that in 2009 there were just under 1.8 million jobs directly supported by tourism expenditure, up from just over 1.7 million in 2008.

The figures are part of a new UK Tourism Satellite Account, developed by ONS to measure the total contribution tourism and its associated industries make to the UK economy.

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