Tourist Inflow to the UK Could Drop by a Third Following Brexit
A vote to leave the European Union this month could cost the UK’s tourism industry as much as £4.1 billion a year in international tourist spending alone.
According to new research published by global travel deals publisher Travelzoo, a third of travelers from Germany, Italy and Spain – and a quarter from France – say they would be less inclined to travel to the UK in the event of a Leave vote. Four in 10 respondents from EU countries also worry that Brexit could make UK holidays more expensive.
Sentiment among the four largest European Union nations (France, Germany, Italy and Spain) is that the UK should stay in the EU, with just under 70% in the Remain camp. In spite of this, respondents from some nations – notably France – believe that leaving the EU could make the UK a safer destination for holidays.
Although almost 75% of the UK’s international visitors come from within the EU, even respondents from further afield (10% of those from Canada and 12% from the US) stated they would be less likely to come to a post-Brexit UK.
Holidays for British tourists in Europe, meanwhile, could become more expensive if the sentiment expressed by some of our neighbours in France and Spain becomes more widespread: 40 per cent of respondents from these countries feel it would be fair to impose higher fees, such as a hiked city tax, on British visitors, if the UK votes Leave on June 23.
UK travellers have their own concerns regarding the impact Brexit could have on the cost of their holiday. Over a quarter (28%) are concerned that withdrawal from the EU could lead to more expensive holidays for them, while 56% are worried that Brexit would reduce the ease and flexibility with which British nationals can currently travel inside the EU.
Travelzoo’s survey was conducted using an online questionnaire in the five largest European Union member states by population, and the US and Canada. The questionnaire was completed by 4,950 Travelzoo members across France, Spain, Germany, the US and Canada.