The UK is the 8th largest tourist destination worldwide in 2016 and benefits from steady growth in international demand.
Britain hosted 36.1 million international visitors in 2015, for a total of 22.1 billion pounds in revenues, or 1% more than the previous year. The objective of the UK is to reach 40 million visitors in 2020.
About 60% of overnights spent in UK hotels are generated by domestic guests whereas international guests account for slightly more than 40% of total demand (in volume). The United States is the leading foreign source market, generating 5.4% of total nights. Over the period 2007-2013 (latest data available), the number of nights spent by American guests had decreased, but US demand significantly bounced back in 2014 and 2015. The second foreign source market is Germany, which accounts for 3.5% of nights spent in British hotels, ahead of France (2.7%) despite strong growth in demand from French guests in recent years. Demand for room nights from Australian guests also surged (+22.7%, to 1.9% of total overnights), enabling Australia to climb into the Top 5 foreign feeder markets for British hoteliers. Overall, the hotel industry in the United Kingdom benefits from its diversified exposure to foreign source markets: Asia accounts for 4.6% of overnights, North America 6.8%, and other non-European markets 5.1%.
In the mid-term, the aim of VisitBritain is to boost the destination and diversify to attract tourists to "secondary" cities and regions. Currently, urban destinations are emerging, such as Liverpool, Manchester and Cardiff, which are reinventing themselves as contemporary metropolises, with modern architecture, culture, and folk and contemporary arts.
The global hotel supply in the United Kingdom stands at 758,370 rooms as of January 1, 2017.
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