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Tourism spend in the last 12 months has reached a record- high, figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) have revealed. In the year to the end of

March 2013, tourism spend reached £19.01bn; a 5 per cent increase year-on-year and the first time the £19bn mark has been broken. This data is part of the

ONS International Passenger Survey which collects infor- mation on passengers entering and leaving the UK and reports monthly. For the month of March 2013 spend by

Spending by inbound tourists to the UK increased during 2012 “Tese latest figures are encouraging for the

overseas visitors was up 14 per cent on March 2012. Tourism minister Hugh Robertson said: “Last year the country was in the international spotlight and we are now beginning to see the positive impact it has had in terms of increased tourism spend.

industry and I will continue to do all I can for the sector to keep this momentum going.” In the 12 months to the end of March the

number of overseas visits were up 1 per cent to 31.2m compared to the 12 months to the end of March 2012. Details:

Inbound visits to the UK increased during 2012

Figures from VisitBritain show that the number of inbound visitors to the UK increased during 2012. With a total of 31 million overseas visitors during the year, there was a 30 per cent rise in the number of BRIC visits to Scotland (82,000 overall). Of this, Edinburgh witnessed a 10% rise

and Glasgow 54 per cent. Wales saw an 18% rise from the BRICs and South West England wel- comed a 12 per cent increase. London recorded a 4 per cent rise, although this still equated to a substantial number of visits (706,000). Details:

Report: staycation trend still strong

More than a third (33 per cent) of Britons are holiday- ing in the UK because they think it is better value for money compared with the average foreign holiday, says a new report. The survey, conducted

by budget hotel chain Travelodge, said that the stay- cation trend has hit record levels this year with a 41 per cent rise in people opting to spend their summer holiday in the UK, rather than trav- elling abroad, which costs an average of £1,010 compared with the staycation average of £399. London has become the number one staycation location for Britain, knock- ing Cornwall off the top spot for the first time in four years.

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Cornwall is still a popular destination, but has been overtaken by London Te report also revealed that due to poor

weather, 15 per cent of Britons have been wait- ing for the weather to improve before booking their holiday. Details:

Twitter: @leisureopps © CYBERTREK 2013

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