Even though demand for European destinations increased by six percent in 2018, the UK saw its inbound tourism taking a dive with a 5.3 percent decrease compared to 2017.
The number of international tourists increased in European countries, except the United Kingdom, in 2018, according to a report published by the European Travel Commission on February 15.
Tourism demand for European destinations increased an average of six percent in 2018 compared the year prior.
The most visited region in the world continued to host more international tourism in 2018, despite the US introducing trade tensions, the uncertainty of Brexit and the economic slowdown the world over.
The 5.3 percent decline in international inbound visitors makes the UK the only one, among 33 countries in Europe, to have a decrease in tourism compared to the previous year.
Turkey tops the list of increasing tourism demand in Europe, with a 22 percent increase.
Serbia, Montenegro and Malta also enjoyed double-digit expansion after Turkey's stellar record.
Those European countries increased inbound tourism thanks to visa-free policies, promotional activities in marketing and air connection services.
Brexit influence on declining tourism in London
Inbound tourists to the UK mainly come from European countries. According to Visit Britain, the largest numbers of tourists from Europe hail from France, Germany, Spain and Ireland. The US is second on the list for the most tourists to the UK.
Tourism from European countries has been decreasing since 2017 and that is attributed to the Brexit decision in June 2016.
Interest in visiting the UK decreased from 76 percent to 69 from August 2016 to Autumn 2018 according to VisitBritain.
For example, the number of French tourists visiting the UK decreased about 6.8 percent in 2018 compared to 2017.
The UK is also one of the most expensive destinations around the world. It is not accessible to those looking for an affordable vacation.
However, despite the British pound losing value against the euro in the last two years, the UK could not increase tourism.
Europeans constitute nearly two-thirds of all overseas visitors that means the UK tourism sector heavily relies on Europe.
A “no-deal” Brexit would have further negative effects for the UK tourism sector.