The United Kingdom might not be the first country that comes to mind for those planning a holiday in Europe but this is rapidly changing, with 2016 showing a boom in international visitors coming to the UK. Recently released statistics show that in the first nine months of 2016 record numbers of visitors flocked to both England and Wales, and Scotland had its busiest tourism period in almost a decade. Visitors picking up a UK airport car rental joined the throng of other international tourists who flooded into the country last year.
Tourism Minister Tracey Crouch said, “This country has so much to offer tourists from both home and abroad and we want to make it even easier for visitors to experience our world-class sights and attractions.”
International visitors weren’t shy about bringing out their wallets during their time in the UK either, with the period from January to September showing increases in spending between 2% (England) and 12% (Scotland) compared to the same period in 2015. This sizable cash injection is good news both for British businesses and those planning a United Kingdom holiday in the near future - after all, as the tourism industry strengthens, the variety and quality of the country’s tourist offerings are likely to increase.
Chief Executive of the national tourism agency VisitBritain, Sally Balcombe said of these economic opportunities: “Inbound tourism is one of our largest export industries and it is very encouraging to see that growth is being spread right across our nations and regions, demonstrating the industry’s increasing importance as a driver of economic growth and jobs … It is a great time to come to Britain.”
According to VisitBritain’s latest inbound tourism forecast, the tourism boom is set to continue this year, with 38.1 million visitors estimated to arrive in the United Kingdom over the course of 2017.
So what is it that’s bringing so many holidaymakers to the UK? Given how diverse this relatively compact country is, it’s no surprise that the upsurge in popularity isn’t due to just one thing. London continues to attract those with a taste for the best in urban living - the city’s cultural, historic and gastronomic highlights are famous worldwide, and picking up a UK airport car rental from Heathrow will allow you to easily explore beyond the city limits into southern England and beyond. Wales lures tourists with its breathtaking seaside vistas on the Pembrokeshire Coast and the majesty of Snowdonia National Park, and Scotland consistently draws in visitors with its ancient castles and rugged highlands, even in the depths of winter.
Quite simply, the United Kingdom is bursting with exciting opportunities, fascinating history and landscapes that will steal your heart away - it’s no wonder that people are beginning to realise the tourism treasure trove that Britain offers. With so many different sights and cultures in a relatively small area, booking a UK airport car rental is a no brainer - a set of wheels will give you the flexibility and freedom to enjoy this marvellous country at your own pace and in your own way.