Saturday, 24 September 2011

Tourism body hits out at Cameron campaign


Tourism body hits out at Cameron campaign

Prime Minister David Cameron’s ‘GREAT’ tourism marketing campaign has been lambasted for falling “far short” of the efforts needed to encourage inbound tourism into the UK.
Inbound operators gave a lukewarm reception to the initiative and called for more action and less words from politicians.
UKinbound chief executive Mary Rance said: “Once again, the government has come up with a great slogan, but no tangible measures to offset the negative perceptions potential tourists have of the UK.
“One month after the riots, foreign markets still have concerns and it is imperative to restore faith in the UK as a safe and secure destination and even more importantly, to ease the barriers to travel that incoming tourists still face.”
She added: “Our industry would rather see politicians’ take actions to address the barriers tourists face when trying to travel to the UK and come up with workable solutions, rather than spend so much time and effort papering over the cracks with slogans and catchphrases.
“It is vital that the government and industry as a whole work together to address some of the key factors which continue to deter potential visitors from visiting the UK, namely punishing airport departure taxes, crippling rates of VAT on accommodation and other services, and cumbersome visa application processes in key emerging markets.”

Almost half of UKinbound members reported that the riots had an immediate impact within the first few days of the disturbances occurring, albeit to a limited extent in most cases.
Examples cited in a survey included cancellations of confirmed bookings from clients overseas, particularly from the Middle East, China and Germany. The student market was also more concerned than other parties.

But the vast majority of members surveyed feel that riots will have minimal impact on their business long term, provided there is not a reoccurrence.
Instead, more than two thirds of those surveyed think the London 2012 Olympics will have a more detrimental effect on their businesses over the next 12 months, according to the poll conducted by Qa Research