Brexit: Long-haul departures are ‘up 50% since referendum’

Brexit: Long-haul departures are ‘up 50% since referendum’

A 50% increase in long-haul travellers from the UK has been recorded since the Brexit referendum, new research reveals.

Passenger numbers to all destinations are up 6%, buoyed by increases to long-haul destinations, including the Americas, up 56%, and Asia up 50%.

The results come from analysis of travel industry data to identify trends since the EU referendum two years ago by eDreams ODIGEO.

Asia accounts for seven out of the top ten global countries for UK traveller growth with Singapore seeing a 232% increase in arrivals, followed by Manila, up 65%, Dubai, up 67% and Istanbul, up 95%.

The US has risen four places to become the fifth most popular destination for British travellers. Los Angeles led the list of cities for highest passenger growth with a 178%, while Boston, up115% and Orlando, up 50% also ranked in the top ten for growth.

The survey suggests the growth trends towards Asian and American destinations could be set to continue, thanks mainly to young travellers looking to explore long-haul destinations for the first time.

Around one in ten (13%) people aged 16-24 are making plans to visit Asia for the first time, whilst 15% plan an inaugural trip to the US.

The overall trend is linked to the rise of low-cost airlines offering long-haul flights, such as Norwegian.

A YouGov poll commissioned by the OTA of 1,600 people to understand how the EU referendum influenced their views reveals that:
• 72% of travellers say they will not cut back on spending this year. Ten per cent are prioritising their getaways by saving in other areas such as eating out and spending on clothes
• A quarter have done at least one thing to save money in relation to holidays or breaks since the EU referendum
• Over one in ten (14%) Londoners have travelled to cheaper destinations for holiday breaks since the referendum – more than double the national average
eDreams ODIGEO head of UK and group external affairs Robert McNamara said: “The pound’s fall in value against the euro, combined with an increase in low-cost long-haul flights, has pushed up UK demand for long-haul travel since the EU referendum in 2016.

“This broadening of holiday horizons is encouraging for the travel industry.

“Time abroad remains precious and a top priority – with most Brits intending to keep holiday spending the same, even if it means cutting back on other areas.

“Looking forward, our most recent data suggests that the growth in long-haul travel amongst UK travellers is set to continue. Although the destinations may change, people still want to travel.”


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