The trade association, which represents 350 members of the UK’s travel and tourism industry, made the announcement at its annual convention yesterday (Thursday, 11 February), following Prime Minister David Cameron’s recent request asking the business community to share their views on EU membership.
Mark McVay, chairman at UKinbound, said: “Our member survey findings highlight overwhelming support for Britain to remain in the EU. This shouldn’t come as a surprise as the EU is an extremely important source market for tourism.
“It is important to our country’s economy that we make it as easy as possible for people to travel here, not isolate ourselves from the market which collectively brought two-thirds of our visitors in 2015.”
Overseas visitor spending in the UK contributed £22bn last year with each inbound visitor subsidising an additional £630 in export earnings and giving £216 to the Exchequer. UKinbound said these statistics highlight the “pivotal role” in which inbound tourism plays within the economy.
Deirdre Wells, CEO of the association, added: “We are fortunate to have a major market – the EU – right here on our doorstep. Our members have been welcoming visitors from our European neighbours for decades.
“They bring much needed revenue to the UK, creating valuable jobs for the UK economy. We need to continue to do all we can to attract more visitors to the UK – and saying ‘yes’ to staying in the EU sends a clear message that we are open for business.”