Latest monthly data

From 22 May we will be working to update all of the data and documents on this page following the Office of National Statistics (ONS) revision of the International Passenger Survey (IPS) data for 2009-2018 and the released detailed 2019 data. Please be patient as we update these pages or contact the VisitBritain research team if you have any questions - VB/VEResearch@visitbritain.org. Thank you.

Due to COVID-19 the Office for National Statistics (ONS) who are responsible for the International Passenger Survey (IPS) suspended interviewing on 16 March 2020. It is not known when interviewing will begin again.

Inbound visitor statistics for March 2020

Visits and spend figures

 

MARCH 2020

 YEAR TO DATE (JAN - MAR '20)

ROLLING 12 MONTHS (APR '19 - MAR '20)

    % change vs March 2019   % change vs Jan - Mar '19   % change vs Apr '18 - Mar '19)
All visits (000) 1,446 -54% 6,994 -16% 39,520 -1%
Spend (£m) £780 -58% £4,344 -10% £27,998 +7%
  • Visits: The UK received 1.4 million visits in March 2020, down 54% year-on-year (YoY). The rolling 12-month period saw visits reach 39.5 million visits, down 1% YoY.
  • Spending: In March 2020 inbound visitors spent £780 million, down 58% on March 2019. Spending levels in the 12-month period to March 2020 generated £28.0 billion, up 7% YoY, just short of the 2017 record for the same time period.

Visits by journey purpose

 

MARCH 2020

YEAR TO DATE (JAN - MAR '20)

ROLLING 12 MONTHS (APR '19 - MAR '20)

  Visits (000) % change vs March 2019 Visits (000) % change vs Jan - Mar '19 Visits (000) % change vs Apr '18 - Mar '19) 
Holiday 584 -49% 2,600 -12% 16,541 0%
VFR 382 -59% 2,197 -18% 11,951 -2%
Business 299 -65% 1,661 -22% 8,208 -4%
Miscellaneous 181 -14% 537 -6% 2,819 +2%
  • Holiday visits were down 49% YoY in March to 584,000 visits. The rolling 12 months to March 2020 were on par with the same period the year before with 16.5 million visits, the highest for that time period.
  • Visits to friends and relatives (VFR) in March 2020 were down 59% on those in March 2019, with 382,000 visits. Visits between April 2019 – March 2020 fell by 2% YoY to 12.0 million visits.
  • Business visits decreased in March by 65% YoY to 299,000 visits. There were 8.2 million business inbound visits to the UK in the 12 months to March 2020, down 4% YoY.
  • Miscellaneous journey purpose visits represent a smaller proportion of inbound UK visits and results do tend to fluctuate. Visits in March were down 14% YoY to 181,000. However, the rolling 12 months to March 2020 increased by 2% compared to the same period the year before to 2.8 million visits.

Visits by global region

 

MARCH 2020

YEAR TO DATE (JAN - MAR '20)

ROLLING 12 MONTHS (APR '19 - MAR '20)

  Visits (000) % change vs March 2019 Visits (000) % change vs Jan - Mar '19 Visits (000) % change vs Apr '18 - Mar '19) 
Europe Total 1,025 -57% 4,926 -18% 26,176 -2%
EU Total 948 -56% 4,472 -19% 23,757 -2%
EU15 826 -51% 3,603 -19% 19,474 -2%
Other EU 132 -69% 869 -20% 4,283 -1%
Rest of Europe 67 -72% 455 -9% 2,419 +2%
North America 208 -42% 794 -12% 5,267 -2%
Rest of World 213 -48% 1,274 -8% 8,077 +1%
  • Visits from Europe overall in March 2020 were down 57% on March 2019 to 1.0 million visits. The rolling 12 months to March 2020 were down 2% YoY to 26.2 million visits.
  • Visits from the EU were down 56% YoY in March to 948,000. The 12 months to March 2020 were down 2% YoY to 23.8 million visits.
  • Visits from the EU15 in March were down 51% YoY to 826,000. Visits between April 2019 – March 2020 were down 2% on the previous 12-month period with 19.5 million visits.
  • Other EU visits were down 69% YoY in March 2020 to 132,000. The 12-month period to March 2020 fell by 1% YoY to 4.3 million visits.
  • Visits from North America were down 42% YoY in March with 208,000 visits. Visits in the rolling 12-month period fell by 2% YoY to 5.3 million.
  • ‘Rest of World’ markets saw a 48% decrease in March to 213,000 visits. However, in the 12 months to March 2020 visits increased by 1% compared to the same period the year before to 8.1 million visits.

 

Download the latest monthly summary for March 2020 (PDF, 1.81MB) Published July 2020