WTM 2019: Visitor figures to Orlando defy ‘Trump slump’

UK visitors to Orlando were up 1.9% last year despite a so-call “Trump slump”.

In 2018, 1,039,000 UK holidaymakers travelled to Orlando.

UK visitor numbers to Orlando are currently up 2-3% between January and August this year.

More: WTM 2019: Full coverage from this year’s event

The UK is the city’s largest overseas market. Overall, Orlando attracts 6.5 million overseas visitors annually.

Visitor numbers from the UK to the US increased to 4.7 million in 2018, appearing to defy predictions of a downturn prompted in part by policies introduced by the Trump administration.

Speaking to Travel Weekly at this year’s WTM event in London, Mayor of Orlando Orange County Jerry L. Demings said hotel occupancy rates remained high with a number of properties expanding because of Orlando’s “robust tourism sector”.

Expansion at Orlando’s International Airport and Universal’s theme park will continue to see tourism growth, according to Demings.

“We receive 50 million passengers to the airport and we expect to add an additional 12 million (after expansion) with 70,000 more flights,” he said.

Asked what impact Brexit would have, Demings said: “It’s something we watch. International politics play some role in how many visitors we have.

“The relationship between the UK and US is very strong and we expect that to continue in spite of some of the political challenges we have.”

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