Latest monthly data

The latest available data from the International Passenger Survey is available below. This shows the volume and value of visits to the UK by overseas residents for the most recent month and quarter.

The survey is run by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) – monthly data is generally available 7 weeks after the end of each month and quarterly data is generally available 4 months after the close of each quarter. For publication dates and more information, please see about the International Passenger Survey.

Inbound visitor statistics for September 2017

Visits and spend figures

  September 2017

Last 3 months (Jul - Sep 17)

Year to Date (Jan - Sep 17)
    % change vs Sep 16   % change vs Jul - Sep 16     % change vs Jan - Sep 16
All visits (000) 3,090 -1% 11,040 4%   30,200 7%
Spend (£m) £2,270 2% £7,820 3%   £18,650 9%
  Rolling 12 months (Oct 16 - Sep 17) Benchmark to best ever rolling 12 months
    % change vs Oct 15 - Sep 16 When Record Current deficit
Total visits (000) 39,630 8% Sep 16 - Aug 17 39,650 -20
Spend (£m) £24,060 7% Oct 16 - Sep 17 £24,060 0
  • Visits:  The UK welcomed 3.1 million overseas visits in September, down marginally by 1% compared to the record holding September 2016.  Between July and September 2017 there were a record 11.0 million inbound visits to the UK, 4% up on the same period last year.  The record setting continues over the first nine months of 2017 and the rolling 12 months to September 2017.  There were 30.2 million visits to the UK in the first nine months of the year and 39.6 million visits in the 12 months to September 2017.
  • Spending: September 2017 spending rose 2% compared to September 2016 to reach £2.3 billion (a new September record).  With record setting results in all of the first nine months of the year, inbound visitors spent a record £18.7 billion, 9% more than the first nine months of 2016.  Over the longer term rolling 12 months to September 2017 visitors to the UK spent a record £24.1 billion in the UK – the highest ever rolling 12 month period.

Visits by journey purpose

  September 2017

Last 3 months (Jul - Sep 17)

Year to Date (Jan - Sep 17)
  Visits (000) % change vs Sep 16 Visits (000) % change vs Jul - Sep 16 Visits (000) % change vs Jan - Sep 16
Holiday 1,150 2% 4,770 8% 12,280 15%
VFR 980 14% 3,490 8% 9,000 6%
Business 710 -18% 1,940 -8% 6,590 -3%
Miscellaneous 250 -3% 840 -7% 2,330 5%
  Rolling 12 months (Oct 16 - Sep 17) Benchmark to best ever rolling 12 months
  Visits (000)

% change vs Oct 15 - Sep 16

When Record (000) Current deficit (000)
Holiday 15,510 15% Oct 16 - Sep 17 15,510 0
VFR 12,040 8% Oct 16 - Sep 17 12,040 0
Business 9,000 -1% Feb 16 - Jan 17 9,300 -300
Miscellaneous 3,080 -1% Apr 07 - Mar 08 3,470 -390
  • Holiday visits were up 2% to a September record of 1.2 million.  The record breaking continues over longer time periods as well.  Between July and September 2017 there were 4.8 million holiday visits to the UK (8% more than the same three month period last year).  So far this year there have been a record 12.3 million holiday visits and the latest 12 month period (October 2016-September 2017) is the strongest ever 12 month period for inbound holiday visits. 
  • Visits to friends and relatives (VFR) were up 14% to a September record of 980,000.  These positive results have contributed to VFR visits tracking 8% higher in the most recent three months compared to July to September 2016.  Overall there have been 9 million VFR visits to the UK in the first nine months of 2017 – the first time the UK has welcomed 9 million VFR visits in the first nine months of any calendar year.
  • Business visits continue to be weaker in 2017, compared to 2016.  Business visits were down 18% in September this year, compared to September 2016.  With only January and May registering growth this year, there were 3% fewer business visits to the UK in the first nine months of 2017, compared to 2016.
  • Miscellaneous journey purpose visits are a combination of a wide range of different journey purposes, including (but not limited to) short term study, looking for work, shopping, attending a sports event and many more.  In September 2017 visits to the UK were 3% down on September 2016 results.  Visits were down 7% in the last three months but with double digit February and March 2017 results, miscellaneous visits were 5% up in the first nine months of 2017, compared to the same period last year (but not a record).  

Visits by global region

  September 2017

Last 3 months (Jul - Sep 17)

Year to Date (Jan - Sep 17)
  Visits (000) % change
vs Sep 16
Visits (000) % change vs Jul - Sep 16 Visits (000) % change vs Jan - Sep 16
EU Total 1,930 2% 6,690 4% 19,550 4%
EU15 1,510 0% 5,470 2% 15,920 3%
Other EU 420 11% 1,220 11% 3,630 7%
Rest of Europe 160 -23% 620 7% 1,870 9%
North America 390 -8% 1,520 -1% 3,810 14%
Rest of World 620 4% 2,230 7% 4,980 14%
  Rolling 12 months (Oct 16 - Sep 17) Benchmark to best ever rolling 12 months
  Visits (000)

% change vs 

Oct 15 - Sep 16

When Record (000) Current deficit (000)
EU Total 26,260 6% Oct 16 - Sep 17 26,260 0
EU15 21,270 5% May 16 - Apr 17 21,460 -190
Other EU 4,990 10% Oct 16 - Sep 17 4,990 0
Rest of Europe 2,450

6%

Sep 16 - Aug 17 2,500 -50
North America 4,760 15% Jan 00 - Dec 00 4,870 -110
Rest of World 6,180 11% Oct 16 - Sep 17 6,180 0
  • Visits to the UK from all EU markets rose 2% in September 2017 to a September record of 1.9 million.  EU visits have been tracking at record breaking year to date levels, reaching 19.6 million in the first nine months of 2017, 4% more than the same period of 2016.
  • Looking specifically at visits from EU15 markets, these were on par with September 2016 with 1.5 million visits.  While visit numbers from this high volume region have been variable in each month of this year, on balance, visits for the first nine months of 2017 are at a record 15.9 million and 3% higher than the first nine months of 2016.
  • Visits from all Other EU markets were 11% higher than September 2016 and is the fifth month of double digit year on year increases. Between January and September 2017 there have been a record 3.6 million Other EU visits, 7% more than in the first nine months of 2017.  Results over the longer term are also at record levels.  There have been 5.0 million visits in the twelve months to September 2017, the highest ever rolling twelve month period.
  • Visit growth from the Rest of Europe in September has reversed recent trends – down 23% compared to September 2016. Buoyed by strong year on year monthly results for most months of 2017, visits for the first nine months of 2017 are 9% higher than the same time last year to a record setting 1.9 million.
  • There were 390,000 visits to the UK from North America in September, the second consecutive month of year on year declines.  These weaker months follow three consecutive months of record breaking levels (May, June and July).  Visits from this region to the UK have combined to show strong growth so far this year (up 14% in the first nine months of 2017, compared to the same period of 2016), edging closer to the record levels recorded at the start of 2000.
  • Rest of World reported a 4% rise in visits to the UK during September 2017.  In the first nine months of this year, Rest of World visits are 15% higher than in the first nine months of 2016 at a record 5.0 million.

Explore the quarterly data or read more on the September 2017 results (PDF, 659KB).