Stafford MP, Jeremy Lefroy has praised the achievements of VisitBritain following the publication of figures showing that 2017 was officially a record-breaker for overseas visits to the UK and for the amount visitors spent across the country. There were 39.2 million inbound visits to the UK in 2017, up 4%, with visitors spending £24.5 billion, up 9%.
There was double-digit growth in visits and spend last year from China, the world’s most valuable outbound market, with visits up 29% on 2016 to a record 337,000 and spending of £694 million, up 35%. Visits from the US, the UK’s most valuable market for tourism spend, grew 13% to 3.9 million in 2017, the highest since 2000. Visitors from the US spent a record £3.6 billion, up 9%. There were also a record 25.6 million visits from the EU in 2017, with visitors spending £10 billion.
Inbound tourism visits across the English regions, outside of London, reached a record 16.5 million, up 3% with spending equalling the previous record of £7.8 billion.
Commenting on the news, Jeremy said: “Tourism contributes billions to the UK economy, supports millions of jobs and is the lifeblood for many communities across the country. The UK has so many unique and important historical, cultural and political sights to share with the world and I thank VisitBritain for all their work in attracting tourists and delivering for British tourism.”