CTC News

Improved long-haul travel outlook for UK market.

Increased affordability and desire to travel means opportunity knocks for Canada, says CTC’s latest Global Tourism Watch report.

29 April 2015

The Brits are starting to look all right again. Boosted by a steadily growing economy—which is poised to become the world’s fifth largest by 2017—UK consumers are starting to look more to long-distance travel horizons, according to the new Global Tourism Watch (GTW) UK summary report by the Research department of the Canadian Tourism Commission (CTC).

More key facts and figures:

  • Just over a third (36%) of UK travellers anticipate spending more money on leisure travel in the next year, while 33% believe they will take more long-haul trips in the next two or three years.
  • Helped by the growing strength of the British pound against the Canadian dollar in recent years, Canada is increasingly being seen as an affordable destination.
  • British Columbia (74%) and Ontario (66%) may be the main two provinces for UK consumers intending to visit Canada in the next two years, but there is also healthy interest in Quebec and Alberta (both 38%).
  • The US is Canada’s main rival in this market: 34% of UK travellers took their last long-haul trip to the States, compared with 7% coming to Canada.
  • One in five UK travellers cites visiting friends and family as their primary reason for travelling.
  • More than half of young British travellers share photos of their vacation while on their trips, significantly above the UK average of all long-haul travellers (36%). 
  • Travel agents still play a significant role in the UK market: 36% of travellers use one to book flights or accommodation.
  • Natural beauty and scenery are the most powerful lures in Canada for UK travellers. Of Canada’s tourism rivals, only Australia and New Zealand provide stiff competition in this area.
  • Despite the strength of sterling, a perception that Canada remains too expensive is the biggest barrier to Brits crossing the Atlantic, especially for those aged 35 to 54 and with lower household incomes.
  • Friends and family are top of the charts for awareness of Canadian destinations for 23% of UK travellers.
  • Canada’s biggest advocates in the UK market are travellers aged 55 or over.

TNS conducts the Global Tourism Watchsurveys for CTC. The company asks thousands of participants aged 18 and over from around the world for their views on Canada and CTC’s “Canada. Keep Exploringtourism brand. The 2014 reports better reflect current travel realities and gather more in-depth information via a substantially revised questionnaire. 

Read the Global Tourism Watch 2014 UK summary report.

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