England’s domestic tourism performance

Supporting English jobs and visitor spend

Domestic tourism in England supports thousands of businesses and employs 2.6 million people. Last year England saw record levels of visits and spend by domestic visitors. And growth swept the nation with many of the country’s nine regions seeing uplift. Overall, visitor spend in England reached £91 billion, accounting for over 80% of the total visitor spend for Britain.

Domestic tourism boost across England

There were 100.6 million domestic overnight trips taken in England in 2017, worth £19 billion. These figures represent an increase from last year of 1% and 3% respectively, powered by a rise in domestic holiday trips of 6%.

Day visits contributed more than £50 billion to the English economy in 2017, with visitor attractions across England reporting a 2% increase in visits during 2017, led by trips to historic houses and castles (up 4%), and other historic properties (up 8%).

And there are encouraging signs for domestic tourism in England in the first six months of 2018. Domestic overnight trips were up by 3%, whilst expenditure has risen by 4%. Holiday trips also grew by 1% between January-June 2018, whilst VFR and business trips have both increased (4% and 9% respectively) following a period of stagnation or decline.

Key facts

  • 100.6 million domestic overnight trips were taken in England in 2017
  • £19 billion was spent on domestic overnight trips in England in 2017
  • 1.5 billion domestic day visits were taken in England, accounting for £50.1 billion in spend in 2017


    2.6 million jobs in England are supported by tourism

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    Over 100 million overnight trips and 1.5 billion day trips were taken in England in 2017

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    £70 billion in total was spent by domestic visitors in England throughout 2017 of which £19 billion generated by overnight visits and £50.9 billion generated by day trips

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    Holidays continue to be a key driver

    Domestic overnight holidays benefited from the staycation boom – spreading £11 billion of visitor spend across all parts of the country in 2017. A key driver to this was a growth in domestic holidays, which reached 47.2 million trips taken in 2017, up 6% from 2016 and matching the record set in 2009.

    The upturn in domestic holiday trips in 2017 was supported by an increased number of 16-34 year olds holidaying at home, with 12% more taking a trip compared to 2016. And the effects of the domestic holiday were felt across the nation, where seven out of nine English regions saw an increase in holiday trips in 2017, illustrating the power of domestic holiday travel in aiding regional dispersal. Growth leaders for 2017 include the North West, where holiday trips increased by 17% year on year to equal record levels, and the North East enjoyed its highest volume of holiday trips seeing a 24% increase year on year.

    Contributing to the uplift in domestic holiday travel in 2017, was a 7% boost in the number of short breaks (between 1-3 nights), with 31.4 million of these trips taken in England in 2017. Longer breaks (of over 4 nights) also grew in 2017, by 3%, with 15.8 million trips taken.

    Even with the excellent performance of 2017, January to June 2018 has also seen holidays grow 1% in volume and 4% in spend, bringing spend to record levels.

    Key facts

    • In 2017, domestic holidays to England reached 47.2 million, up 6% on last year
    • £11 billion was spent on domestic holidays to England in 2017, up 6% on 2016
    • 5.8 million more domestic holidays of 1-3 nights were taken in England in 2017 than in 2007
    • 16-34 year olds took 12% more domestic holidays in England in 2017 than in 2016