Visitor numbers to the UK have fallen for the first time in three months.
Figures from the British Hospitality Association’s (BHA) Travel Monitor show visitor numbers to the UK in September fell by 1% year-on-year, in contrast to increases of 6% and 5% seen in July and August, and the 9% growth seen in the first half of the 2017.
The decline was driven by a sharp fall in visitor numbers from North America, down 8% in September compared to last year, and followed a 28% rise from the region for the first half of 2017.
Short-haul travel numbers also declined by 0.3%.
Inbound holiday passenger numbers grew 1.7% year-on-year, but this still lags behind the 15% rise seen in the year to date.
Overall UK spend by overseas residents is up 2%, but business traveller numbers continue to decline, which are down 18%.
Ufi Ibrahim, chief executive of the British Hospitality Association, said: “It is disheartening to see visitor numbers decline after positive growth for the previous three months.
“This fall has been largely driven by a reduction in passenger numbers from North America and this demonstrates, in part, the knock-on effect that this year’s tragic terror attacks have had on long-haul bookings.
“The BHA travel monitor also notes that the number of business travellers to the UK again declined, falling by 18% year-on-year for the month of September. This is an important reminder to the Government of the need to recognise the priorities of business when negotiating Brexit.”
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