Another very British special occasion is on the horizon when Prince Harry marries Meghan Markle in Windsor Castle on the 19th May 2018. But do these royal occasions lead to an increase in tourism and will the royal wedding boost Britain’s economy. Quick Loans Express takes an in-depth look.
Will the Royal Wedding Boost Britain’s Economy?
In this article, Quick Loans Express, a quick payday loans lender, look at whether the forthcoming royal wedding will bring more foreign tourists to the UK. Also, will the royal wedding boost Britain’s economy. What happened when Prince William married Kate Middleton? We look at what the statistics tell us. Finally, we see how long-term the financial effects of a royal wedding are and, whether the British economy benefits in any other ways.
Do Royal Weddings Really Encourage More Foreign Visitors?
Seeing as the wedding between Prince William and Kate Middleton only took place 7 years ago, the easiest way to answer this question is to see whether their wedding led to a sudden spike in tourism to the UK. The ONS (Office for National Statistics) reported that 354,000 more visitors came to the country in April 2011. This represented a 15% increase on figures for the previous year. This might sound impressive. However, if you bear in mind that according to Euromonitor, 38 million foreign tourists visited the UK in 2017, this rise is really quite negligible.
If the previous royal wedding wasn’t an immediate tourist draw, what do initial figures tell us about Prince Harry’s wedding? Media reports about an increase in inbound tourism are mixed. Although flight searches to London have increased by up to 194% from some American cities, this hasn’t necessarily been accompanied by bookings. Airbnb have predicted that bookings over the wedding period (May 18th-20th) will increase by 192% in Windsor (where the wedding will be held). In nearby Slough, there will be an increase of 1438%.
Are There Other Explanations for the Boost in Tourism?
The travel agent Opodo stated that bookings for London holidays have increased by a third over 17th-19th May. Compared to the same period in 2017, (with most bookings coming from Germany, Spain, France, Italy and Portugal) this is an increase. Are there any other reasons for this rise?
Some financial experts believe that any increase has not so much to do with the royal wedding. They believe that it has more to do with a continued sterling slump. Tourists are mainly interested in good value for money rather than a royal wedding. 2017 saw an 8% increase in inbound tourism. Toursits also spent 10% more as a result of a weak pound and this seems set to continue into 2018.
Do Royal Weddings Keep Tourists Away?
The wedding as a boost to tourism is also accompanied by a backlash, however. Some American travellers have contacted their travel agents about the possibility of changing their previously-booked travel dates. Their worry has been that they’ll get caught up in the mass influx of tourists, waste time in queues and pay more for hotels and food. Only the news that the wedding will be outside the capital has reassured them and led them to stick to their original travel plans.
A royal wedding might appeal to some foreign tourists. However, there isn’t an enormous surge since their bookings balance out with other people preferring to put off their proposed holiday to the UK until the wedding is over. But how long does the effect of a royal wedding last?
What are the Long-Term Effects of a Royal Wedding on Tourism?
Although there hasn’t been a surge in bookings to coincide with the dates of the wedding itself, this doesn’t mean a lack of impact. The wedding will affect the future tourism to the UK. With blanket media coverage, a royal wedding puts Britain in the spotlight. A pageant of pomp and ceremony set against a backdrop of historic buildings is the best free advertising that the country could ask for. Visitors might not immediately book their holidays, but the wedding reminds them of the reasons to choose the UK as a tourist destination.
Are There Other Financial Benefits of a Royal Wedding?
If a royal wedding doesn’t translate into an immediate effect, are there any other financial gains of such occasions?
Apart from an increase in domestic tourism which will benefit the area around Windsor, an estimated £50 million is expected to be spent on souvenirs and wedding merchandise while Britain will also receive money for the sale of broadcasting rights.
Finally, the royal family encourages its members to only wear creations by British fashion designers. Originally called the ‘Kate Effect’ after the Duchess of Cambridge, the new ‘Markle Sparkle’ has led to clothing she has worn selling out. Female members of the royal family are the best showcase for the UK fashion industry. It is worth around £150 million a year.
Conclusion: Does the Royal Wedding Boost Britain’s Economy?
Quick Loans Express, a payday loans direct lender, likes to keep you in the know of current events and how they effect us financially. This royal wedding is no different. Although this latest royal wedding won’t be a public holiday, this won’t deter many Britons from travelling to Windsor to line the streets. Windsor and the towns around it will feel the immediate financial benefits. However, the economy will see the real impact of the royal weddings in the long term. Britain’s history and heritage are a major draw for inbound tourists, and a wedding is an excellent showcase for them both. The effects of this latest royal wedding will be felt long after the celebrations have finished. Finally, will the royal wedding boost Britain’s economy? Time will tell.