London’s arrivals grow +14% due to weak pound sterling

By Luke Barras-hill |

LondonarrivalseditInternational tourists are benefitting from the softened UK sterling with arrival bookings to the capital +14% ahead of figures for July to October year-on-year, according to ForwardKeys.

Robust growth is being driven by long-haul travel demand from the Americas (+21%), Asia Pacific (+14%) and Africa (+15%), but traffic from the Middle East has dampened (-20%) due to the drop in the oil price and the timing of Ramadan.

Olivier Jager, ForwardKeys co-founder and CEO, commented: “London is great value at the moment and people are springing at the opportunity for a holiday, costing less than they might have anticipated.

“It’s also testimony to London’s appeal as a destination and excellent news for all those businesses involved in selling London and the rest of the UK as a destination.

“This is an obvious and clear demonstration of how currency fluctuations affect travel, even in the face of other significant factors.”


Arrivals bookings to London are 14% ahead for the period July to October year-on-year, but growth is lower compared to the first half of the year (see below). Click to enlarge. Source: ForwardKeys.


Outside Europe, BRIC nations Brazil, Russia, India and China are all showing double-digit growth in forward bookings to London.

Standout countries showing the greatest advance in bookings include Chile (+67%), Brazil (+48%), Taiwan (+43%) and China (+35%).

Compared to its European counterparts, London is the leading destination for long-haul travel in terms of its share of segment bookings for arrivals (12%) during the same period.


London’s +16% demand for long haul in the early half of the year was driven by The Americas and Asia Pacific regions. Click to enlarge. Source: ForwardKeys.

This compares to Paris (9%), Rome (7%) and Barcelona (5%), however Madrid (4%), Amsterdam (4%) and Milan (3%) outpace the UK capital in terms of actual booking volume growth (see below).

In HY1 2017, total long-haul international arrivals were up by 16% year-on-year, with big gains coming from the Americas and Asia Pacific.

ForwardKeys is an expert in future travel patterns, examining and interpreting over 17m booking transactions a day.


Amsterdam, Madrid and Milan outpace London in arrivals growth. Source: ForwardKeys.


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