ForwardKeys has revealed that the UK could look forward to a rise in visitors from the United States during Thanksgiving week.
According to data from ForwardKeys, flight bookings from the US to the UK are up 20% from Sunday 18 to Saturday 24 November 2018 compared to the week when Thanksgiving fell last year. The increase echoes a longer-term trend with forward bookings from the US to the UK tracking up 27% from November 2018 to April 2019 compared to the same period previously.
The US is the UK’s most valuable inbound visitor market for tourism spend. Visitors from the US spent a record GBP 3.6 billion (USD 4.6 bn) across the UK last year, up 9% on the previous year. Visits from the US grew 13% to 3.9 million in 2017 — the highest since 2000.
“We want the UK to be the number one destination for US travellers”
VisitBritain’s director, Patricia Yates, commented: “We want the UK to be the number one destination for US travellers so it is great to see forward bookings looking strong in the coming weeks and months from our most valuable visitor market.
“Working with partners including American Airlines, British Airways, Norwegian Air and Virgin Atlantic, we are boosting route connectivity and seat capacity, making it easier for US visitors to travel and to explore further through regional gateways such as Manchester, driving growth from tourism across our nations and regions.”
VisitBritain’s global campaign ‘I Travel For…’ launched earlier this year in the US. It aims to shine the spotlight on unexpected experiences and less explored destinations across the UK to drive tourism across the nations and regions.
The bureau is also working with content partners in the US to promote Britain’s food and drink, culture, countryside and football-related visitor experiences — telling the stories of destinations and inspiring visitors to discover more, travel further and stay longer.
Tourism is worth GBP 127 billion to the UK economy, creating jobs and boosting economic growth across its nations and regions.