UK comes fifth in competitive tourism report

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A travel report from the World Economic Forum shows the UK having the fifth most competitive market globally.

Aided by the masses of cultural attractions, business environment and strong travel system, the UK remains a top competitor for the best tourism destinations.

The report also shows Switzerland surpassing the United Kingdom for being more expensive, ranking 140th out of 141 countries regarding price competitiveness.

The World Economic Forum’s Travel and Tourism Competitive Index concluded that the UK’s strength was pulled down by its heavy Air Passenger Duty (APD) and airport charges. There has been a call upon the new government to eradicate APD on the back of the report.

Topping the index was Spain which is a first; this is a result of the country’s increase in tourists flocking over from rising markets such as Brazil, China and Mexico. The figures exceeded 60 million tourists commuting to Spain in 2013, leading to it being the third most visited country in the world.

Other frequently visited travel destinations made the top list including Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Switzerland, the UK and the US. Among the rising markets, China fell in 17th and Brazil, 28th that were included in the top 30.

Roberto Crotti, the economist of the World Economic Forum, explained: “The diversity in the top 30 shows that a country does not have to be wealthy to have a flourishing tourism sector. But many countries should still do more to tackle travel and tourism challenges, including visa policies, better promotion of cultural heritage, environmental protection and ICT readiness. This in turn would drive economic growth and the creation of jobs.”

The report continued on to state the areas that potentially needed to adapt to the varying global trends and marketing segments. Those that had been identified had been the rising number of middle-class travelers from any emerging countries, senior consumers, and millennials.

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