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Boom in domestic holidays lifts region’s tourism sector

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The growing number of people staying in the UK for holidays this year has provided a boost to the region’s SMEs. The East of England saw 1,370 new businesses start up in the sector in the first half and it now generates 3.3 per cent of SME income in the region, according to a survey from Barclays Business.

Overall, it suggests 70 per cent of UK adults will take a ‘staycation’ this year and turnover for SMEs in the accommodation and food services sector inthe first half was up 6.4 per cent on the same period last year.

Jane Galvin, managing director, corporate banking at Barclays Eastern region (photo), said: “Brits are opting to spend their leisure time on UK shores and in turn it is boosting the takings of business in the tourism sector. With a weaker pound, UK SMEs are also likely to see a rise in overseas holidaymakers coming to the UK. With people spending more money on their ‘Great British Getaway’, this in turn presents a huge opportunity for business owners and the tourism industry to capitalise on the rise in domestic tourism. There is welcome growth for UK accommodation and food sectors who have adapted around seasonal volatility and come out fighting. With the many outstanding cities and areas of historical national beauty and the miles of coastal towns in the East of England, the region is well placed to benefit from this development.”

Overall business income in the sector totals £50bn and is up 30 per cent since 2012 making the sector one of the strongest growing in the UK with growth 10 per cent above the UK SME average for turnover growth. Brits are spending £22.1billion on UK staycations, £613 per party on average, up from £575 in 20155. Men are spending over 14 per cent more than women with £657, while those over 55+ spend £684 on average. Londoners are splashing £701 to stay in the UK, while in Wales the figure is £526.

The seaside is the most popular type of staycation with 46 per cent heading to be beside the sea, then country breaks (40 per cent). A city break is chosen by 36 per cent, 25per cent want to spend holidays staying with friends and family, followed by those visiting National Trust sites (21per cent). August and September are the most popular months for UK ‘staycationers’.

Last Updated ( Friday, 26 August 2016 08:55 )