UK visitor numbers dropped in July in spite of Olympic Games, due to extortionate hotel rates

by William ASTON on September 14, 2012

The amount of overseas tourists that visited Britain dropped during July, in spite of the hugely successful London Olympics, fresh research has revealed.

Around 3.18 million foreign visitors spent time in Britain during July, a figure that is down from the 3.36 million that headed to UK shores in July 2011, according to ONS - the Office for National Statistics. Similarly, total spending by visitors from overseas also dropped in the same month from 2011’s £2.13 billion to £2.01 billion in 2012.

Figures for August, whenever they become available, could display similar trends. Recently, BAA reported a two per cent fall in the amount of passengers that passed through its airports. These statistics won’t be of any surprise to travel and tour operators, who had warned earlier on in the year that extortionate London hotel prices could were already helping to dissuaded many ordinary holidymakers from taking trips to the UK capital in July.

The figures will come as a blow to the Coalition Government, which revealed in August that it has set a goal of attracting 4.5 million additional overseas visitors by 2015. A spokesman representing VisitBritain said that the UK is still likely to hit its target of welcoming 30.7 million foreign visitors overall in 2012, however.

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