Have your say on the tourism sector deal

Responses to this consultation, whether on specific aspects or on the whole document, are welcomed. We want the consultation responses to be as relevant to your business and the future of your business as possible. The tourism industry is hugely diverse with over 200,000 SMEs involved in the sector. This consultation is an opportunity to offer them a chance to feed in to this important process.

There are a few main points that respondents may like to consider outlined in the questionnaire below. 

If you have any issues submitting your form please email: industry.relations@visitbritain.org 

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Applications will only be considered if you are able to agree with all the statements above.


Improving productivity

Productivity has been identified as a structural issue for the whole of the UK economy. Evidence suggests that tourism shows mixed results in the overall productivity gap. Below are some potential areas where productivity could be boosted.

Areas of consideration could include:

  • Lifting the VAT threshold businesses pay.
  • Increasing out of season visits
  • Building on the UK’s Business, Visits and Events sector.
  • Using mobile technology to improve customer experiences and encouraging further exploration.


How this will impact your business:

  • Would any of the areas above improve productivity in your business or area and to what extent?
  • How can productivity best be improved in your business? 

Better infrastructure & connectivity

Improving overall connectivity through air links, rail, roads and online are important for the entire economy, but for the tourism sector, spread to every corner of the country, its critical to understand the key needs and current issues that need to be fixed to unlock future potential.

Visas and entry to the UK are likely to change in a post-Brexit world and it is important that this is seen as part of the future “connectivity” of the UK.

Areas of consideration could include:

  • Tourism embedded in surface transport planning
  • Tax breaks for regional airports to increase international capacity
  • Easier navigable network of UK public transport
  • Superfast broadband, its roll out and the impact of the digital revolution on SMEs.
  • The future of visas in a post-Brexit world.


How this will impact your business:

  • What of the ideas above would make an impact on your business and can you quantify that
  • Is inadequate connectivity holding back the development of your business? What would you need to be successful?

The skills for the future of tourism

Tourism is a people dependent business, and skills in hospitality are in demand and highly specialised in a number of professions. In the future there will be an increasing focus on digital skills too.

There is also a need to look at future demand and encouraging young people and parents to look at the sector as a first choice for a career.

Areas of consideration could include:

  • SMEs and the skills needs in a digital environment.
  • The types of skills needed in tourism sectors.
  • Making the industry the sector of choice for young people


How this will impact your business:

  • Do you believe digital will have more of a place in your business over the next decade? What impact will that have? Do you feel you have the skills to take advantage of this change
  • What are the issues you face recruiting staff?
  • What would you like to see to encourage more young people to consider a job in the industry?

Building product

Britain is renowned as one of the most established tourist destinations in the world with a wealth of heritage, culture, sporting and food and drink product for domestic and international visitors to enjoy. Our product continues to evolve, and we are interested in hearing how it can be better supported in the future and how it can be even more competitive.

Areas of consideration could include:

  • Ensuring that every part of the UK has a local tourism strategy.
  • Creation of Tourism Zones offering tax incentives and coordinated working with business and local authorities.
  • Digital skills across the tourism sector.
  • Mobile bookable product.


How will this impact your business:

  • Are there incentives the government can offer to help build world class product in your area?
  • What new expectations do you see customers expecting of your business? What changes are you intending to make as a result of this?
  • What do you see as the opportunities to reach new customers through online and digital means?
  • Would new Tourism Zones help to coordinate product in a more effective way?

Regulation that works

Regulation has often been used as an area where government could do more to ease the burden on SMEs. In tourism, there are a number of specific areas where the impact is more pronounced than other sectors.

Areas of consideration could include:

  • Tourism focus in local economic growth plans led by Local Enterprise Partnership boards and/or Metro Mayoral regions in England
  • Extend Primary Authority – one local authority takes the lead in giving advice to tourism business to ensure consistency.
  • More flexible planning regulations related to tourism businesses.


How this will impact your business:

  • What are the specific regulations you feel hold you back in your business?
  • Would reducing certain regulations help your business to grow?
  • If local structures like LEPs included tourism in their economic planning, do you feel this would strengthen local policy?