According to visitengland.com the value of the UK’s tourism and leisure industry is 126.9 billion and employs 1.6 million people. It is therefore understandable that the country exiting the European Union raises the questions of the future of this industry so crucial to the economy of Great Britain.
With the unwelcoming decision of the British nation to cut itself off from the rest of Europe, one could expect to see a decline in the country’s tourism sector. Knowing that the main reason why British people voted yes to Brexit was immigration, it was reasonable to think that a significant number of vacationers would opt for another destination. Nay! It appears that tourism in the United Kingdom is expected to exceed all records with 41.7 million expected visitors, representing an increase of 4.4% compared to the previous year, who will spend a total estimated at 26.9 billion pounds.
UK Tourism Set to Hit Record Numbers in 2018
One of the most decisive factors explaining this phenomenon is the devaluation of the British pound making the country more affordable for people abroad to spend their holidays. The currency devaluation linked to the British Brexit has made business travel and tourism more affordable attracting more and more European travellers coming mainly from France, Germany, Holland, Ireland and Romania, not to mention the increase in American and Australian travellers.
It Might be the Calm Before the Storm Though
As the low-cost airline, Ryanair warned us, the flights could be anchored in the UK if an agreement on the movement of people in and from the EU is not found before the actual exit of the country in March 2019. Leaving the country of the European Union may mean that European tourists will need visas to travel to the United Kingdom, as well as British to visit Europe, whatever the member country.
The good numbers expected this year are perhaps the culmination of a growth curve for the UK tourism industry that is about to reverse. Once again, it all depends on how the British government will succeed in negotiating the terms of its divorce with the European Union and we will be able to measure the effects of Brexit on tourism in March 2019. For the moment, UK’s tourism does not have to worry for 2018. Let’s hope that it will last for the years to come.