Posted on: 13 November 2017
VisitBritain has announced a three-year partnership with Birmingham and surrounding areas to promote more of England’s regions to overseas visitors.
The partnership is a joint initiative with Birmingham Airport, the West Midlands Growth Company, Shakespeare’s England and Marketing Peak District and Derbyshire. The organisations will market Birmingham and the surrounding areas as a destination to a global audience and promote direct flights to the area, focusing on the US market in the first year.
“Tourism is one of the UK’s most valuable export industries, worth £127 billion annually to the economy,” said VisitBritain commercial director Carol Dray. “Increasing regional connectivity not only makes it easier for visitors to see more of Britain, the West Midlands and the Peak District, it boosts economic growth, and helps keep us an attractive destination in this fiercely competitive global market.”
“We’re proud and excited to be working with partners on this gateway campaign to drive more visitors to the region over the next three years,” said Jo Lloyd, Birmingham Airport’s commercial director.
“England’s Heartland offers visitors everything they could possibly imagine – from adventure and history to culture and arts – and with new long haul low cost direct services commencing next summer, Birmingham Airport offers the perfect gateway for visitors ready to discover our vibrant cities, beautiful villages and rolling countryside.”
Next year Primera Air is to launch low-fare direct flights into Birmingham from New York, Boston and Toronto in the US and Canada.
Latest figures from VisitBritain show that there were 1.9 million visits from the US to the UK in the first six months of this year, a 31% increase on the same period last year, the company’s forecast also shows that overseas visits are expected to reach 39.7 million in 2017, up 6% on 2016 figures.
“Birmingham and its surrounding areas have become increasingly popular tourist destinations, attracting some 1.5 million international visitors in 2015,” said Emma Gray, director of marketing and communications, West Midlands Growth Company. “By working in partnership with our destination partners we will be in an even stronger position to attract more visitors to the region, increasing economic development and growth.”