Who we are & what we do
Tourism is currently worth around £127 billion a year to the British economy and as the national tourism agency, we’re here to ensure tourism continues to contribute and thrive across our nations and regions - promoting Britain worldwide, and developing world-class English tourism product.
As the national tourism agency – a non-departmental public body funded by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS), VisitBritain/VisitEngland builds the value of tourism to the nations and regions by developing product, raising the aspiration to travel and converting that aspiration to booking, and partnering with a range of commercial organisations.
Our VisitEngland activity is focused on the development and delivery of the £40m Discover England Fund. This is a three-year funding programme for large scale collaborative and innovative bids that join up and develop the product across geographies and themes and support the domestic market through the delivery of stand-out bookable product. We are also committed to providing practical support to English tourism businesses to grow, promoting excellence and quality while developing new business event capacity and capability for England to generate demand for future business events.
Our VisitBritain activity is focused on increasing the value and volume of tourism exports, developing England and Britain’s visitor economy by promoting Britain worldwide and boosting visitor spend.
Our international network connects us with a global audience across four regions – Europe, the Americas, Asia Pacific Middle East & Africa (APMEA), and China & North East Asia – serviced by offices around the world. Across these markets we build relationships with local trade, media and commercial partners, and deliver compelling campaigns to inspire and target customer segments. This activity is based on our understanding of customers and markets.
As well as working closely with the nations and regions, we act as a route to market for small tourism businesses through our travel trade, digital and retail activities and provide advice and support to tourism providers in England on setting up and growing their tourism business.
Alongside our work with partners and the travel trade, we have a statutory remit to be a trusted advisor to Government and industry on matters affecting Britain’s standing as a leading tourism destination, particularly those that affect the UK’s international competitiveness, making the case for tourism to be prioritised in policy-making by providing policy solutions, market intelligence and customer insights.
To grow the volume and value of inbound tourism across the nations and regions of Britain and to develop world class English tourism product to support our growth aspirations.
Facts about British tourism
- Tourism is a £127 billion industry representing around 10% of GDP in Britain
- Tourism supports 3.1 million jobs, 9.6% of total jobs in 2013
- International visitors spent a record £24.5 billion here last year
- British residents spent £19 billion on 100.6 million overnight trips in England in 2017
Our strategic priorities
Our activity drives economic growth across the nations and regions by providing customer focused marketing strategy built on content, digital and PR. This increases the aspiration to travel, and links our B2B and product development work to make sure that bookable regional British product is available to international consumers. Our focused regional strategies allow us to deploy our knowledge of the local overseas market, translate the changing consumer trends and engage with key target segments proactively throughout their entire customer journey.
In 2018/19, the organisation will continue to maintain distinct activities to develop and market English tourism and to market Britain overseas to drive growth in international leisure and business tourism.
Our strategic corporate priorities for 2018/19 are:
- Build tourism’s value across the nations and regions – and deliver positive results with the GREAT fund
- Manage the Discover England Fund
- Advise on Tourism Growth
- Deepen our partnerships to leverage their reach, innovation and value
- Deliver business events wins across the UK
- Drive towards operational excellence