UK and Europe’s airports ‘could net 156m extra duty free buyers post-Brexit’

By Luke Barras-hill |

M1nd-set’s research has identified travellers between the UK and EU countries who were previously not eligible to purchase goods exempt of excise duty on departure or arrival at airports.

Nearly 79 million (78.7 million) additional shoppers could flock to airport duty free stores in the United Kingdom following the end of the Brexit transition period, forecasts m1nd-set.

A special post-Brexit analysis from the Swiss research agency assesses the impact of the return of duty free allowances for UK-EU travellers.

It identifies a potential combined increase of 156 million eligible duty free customers at British and European airports, as of January 2021.

The research draws on m1nd-set’s proprietary traffic and shopper insights tool, Business 1ntelligence Service (B1S), to measure the volume of duty-exempt passengers departing from any of the 1,500 airports covered by B1S.


Other markets to benefit from the change in excise rules in the UK are Spain, Italy, Germany, Ireland, France, the Netherlands, Portugal, Greece, Poland and Spain.

Spain’s airports are forecast to attract an extra 16.5 million potential eligible duty free shoppers, with Italy just shy of eight million, Germany at just over 7.3 million and Ireland in excess of 6.6 million.

Clara Susset, Travel Retail Research Director at m1nd-set commented: “Thanks to m1nd-set’s partnership with IATA, the B1S data is the industry’s only comprehensive traffic data tool which compiles actual passenger data based on flights taken, as opposed to other tools which provide only booking information.

“This, combined with m1nd-set’s comprehensive database of shopper insights means B1S provides a unique detailed and accurate picture of the potential post-Brexit shopper behaviour with quantifiable impacts based on the traffic data and forecast information.

“This is already enabling a significant number of m1nd-set partners to map out what the post-Brexit potential growth trajectory might look like for their category and brands.”

All graphs courtesy of m1nd-set/B1S.

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