Far East tourism surge boosts UK hotels performance

UK hotels

According to Expedia Group’s latest data, UK hotels enjoyed positive growth in 2018 as a result of a surge in visitors, particularly from the Far East.

Once again, tourism in the UK has remained strong with major cities and regions experiencing significant double-digit growth in 2018. This growth has been driven mainly by travellers from the Far East — with demand from Chinese travellers rising by almost 160% year-on-year last year.

This was also supported by visitors from Japan (+30% year-on-year), Malaysia (+45% year-on-year), Korea (+20% year-on-year) and Thailand (more than +30% year-on-year).

“Last year was clearly a year of growth”

Irene Roberts, director of market management, Expedia Group: “Last year was clearly a year of growth, with greater numbers of travellers choosing to visit the UK and experience more diverse locations. Our data suggest that we continue to work successfully with our lodging partners to provide access to valuable international customers.”

London tourists - UK hotels

Whilst London naturally enjoyed the strongest demand amongst tourists (seeing positive growth of almost 15% year-on-year), other UK cities have also witnessed increased visitor numbers.

International and domestic demand for Manchester, Birmingham and Cardiff grew by 15%, with the Scottish cities of Edinburgh and Glasgow both experiencing year-on-year growth in demand of around 10%. In addition, Edinburgh kept its spot as the second most popular destination by market share after London for tourists visiting the UK.

“Lengthier booking windows and increased on-property spend”

Roberts concluded: “The significant rise in demand from valuable Far East visitors is great news for hoteliers — lengthier booking windows and increased on-property spend enable them to focus their time on maximising bookings during shoulder periods. Our proposition of providing hotel partners with a global reach through continued investment in technology and marketing is helping capture those visitors and drive conversions.”

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