Tourism bosses in Massachusetts are hoping an increase in regional and affordable airlift from the UK will encourage visitors who may have been put off by high hotel prices in Boston and a focus on flights from Heathrow.

Jackie Ennis, head of international marketing for the Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism, admitted Boston struggled to compete as a city-break destination with the likes of New York and Chicago due to a lack of affordable hotel product.

However, she said the introduction of Virgin Atlantic’s Manchester flight in addition to the launch of Primera’s Birmingham and Stansted routes in 2018 would offer attractive pricing and free up disposable income for longer stays.

She added: “The new airlift is very encouraging, and when you take into account Norwegian and Aer Lingus services and flights into Providence and Hartford, Connecticut, you have options for a wider range of budgets.”

Over the two-year period from 2014 to 2016, Massachusetts reported an 18% increase in visitor numbers from the UK.

Travel Weekly coverage of World Travel Market