New data from the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) shows the tourism sector in the UK is recovering. The industry is expected to make a £192 billion contribution to the economy this year, though this is still down by a fifth on pre-pandemic levels.
The global tourism body forecasts a healthy recovery for the UK tourism sector if travel restrictions and “unnecessary” testing protocols remain off limits for the rest of the year.
According to the latest research, it could also mean a net gain in jobs for the sector, with a rise of 1.7 per cent on pre-pandemic levels, resulting in some 4.3 million people being employed within tourism by the end of the year, 70,000 more than in 2019.
This latest WTTC data will come as welcome news to the country’s battle-scarred tourism sector as it looks forward to travel returning.
Julia Simpson, WTTC chief executive, said: “Travel to and from the UK is poised for a full recovery. “By the end of this year, we estimate its contribution to national economy could reach £192 billion. While the UK was one of the worst hit in terms of the sector’s contribution to GDP, the future is looking positive.
“But this will depend on the government keeping to its pledge to re-open UK Plc and not reintroducing the chaotic travel restrictions that actually had zero impact on the spread of the virus.”
Last week, research from WTTC revealed that as the world began its recovery from pandemic, the sector’s contribution to both the global economy and employment could reach almost pre-pandemic levels this year.
It forecasts that the global tourism’s contribution to the global economy could reach $8.6 trillion this year, just 6.4 per cent behind pre-pandemic levels.