The first quarter of 2017 saw a record number of Chinese travellers visit the UK.
According to the latest figures from VisitBritain, a total of 54,000 Chinese arrived in the UK in January-March 2017, which marks a sharp 27% increase compared to the same period in 2016. Spending by Chinese travellers in the UK also increased 27% to GBP91 million (US$118m).
In total, the UK recorded 8.3m overseas visits during Q1 2017, which marks a 10% year-on-year increase and a new first quarter record. Other key source markets showing strong growth included France (+9% to 991,000), the US (+16% to 641,000) and Australia (+10% to 174,000).
“It is very encouraging to see such strong growth from some of our largest and most valuable markets, including France and the US, as well as markets that are important for our future, such as China,” said VisitBritain’s director, Patricia Yates. “With forward-bookings for international arrivals tracking ahead for the coming months, we are anticipating a strong summer holiday season.”
The latest data from ForwardKeys shows that flight bookings from China to the UK are tracking 35% ahead for July to September compared to the same period last year.