The ONS reported an increase in both the volume and value of overseas visits to Britain during February, with arrivals increasing three per cent and spend one per cent.
Coupled with January arrivals, the year-to-date picture for 2012 is that both the volume and value of inbound tourism are up by seven per cent. Holiday visits, it says, remain at record levels, with more than 12 million such trips over the year to February 2012. Some of the strongest growth over the last year has been from long-haul source markets such as Australia and Brazil.
Mark Di-Toro of VisitBritain said: “February saw 1.76 million visits from overseas, while spending amounted to around £1 billion. These results show modest increases in what is traditionally a quiet month for international tourism and means we are on course to reach this year’s forecast of 30.7 million inbound arrivals.
“This provides us with a stable platform to build on the vast profile our country will receive in 2012, with hallmark events such as the Games and the Diamond Jubilee helping us to enhance our image to billions of potential visitors around the world, and allowing us to capitalise on these once-in-a-lifetime opportunities to drive more tourism to Britain than ever before.”