This level of growth resulted in visits and spend hitting new records for the January to September period, with just over £1 billion spent during 452,000 total visits from the six GCC countries - Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Oman, Bahrain, Kuwait and Qatar.
VisitBritain’s GCC trade mission aims to build on this growth, providing UK suppliers with the opportunity to meet more than thirty travel agents from Kuwait to promote holiday destinations, tour packages and attractions from all over Britain, highlighting attractive deals available to GCC holidaymakers in the lead up to the long summer break and school holidays. Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Museum & Tour will be among the suppliers attending the mission and Britain’s strong retail offering will be showcased by Westfield UK and Bicester Village.
The mission will be held at the Sheraton Towers Hotel in Kuwait on 12 February.
VisitBritain has invested heavily in ongoing tactical marketing across the GCC region as part of the GREAT campaign. In December it signed a three-year, £2 million-pound partnership with Etihad Airways to facilitate joint marketing activities and worked together with the UK Embassy and British Council in Qatar to show case the collaborative work of UK and Qatari fashion designers for the 2013 Qatar-UK Fashion Exchange.
The most recent marketing activity in Kuwait was the GREAT campaign “Dunes to Dales” that reached more than 3 million users online. The campaign invited 4 cyclists from the GCC including the Kuwaiti cyclist, Othman Al Mutairi, to explore the dales of the English countryside the backdrop of Tour de France Grand Depart that will kick start this summer from Yorkshire, Britain.
Kuwait tops the high-spending markets for Britain, with an average spend per visit of £4,136, whilst the overall average for all visitors to Britain is £600 per visit; and VisitBritain predicts that by 2020, it will have a projected value percentage growth of 50%.
Shopping, visiting parks and gardens and going to museums and galleries are three of the most popular activities for visitors from Kuwait when in Britain, with green spaces and a moderate climate providing a unique opportunity to spend time relaxing outdoors.
VisitBritain Mission Leader and Marketing Director, Joss Croft, commented: “We have ambitious growth targets which we are working tirelessly to achieve from across the GCC region. We’ve already partnered and launched campaigns with the top three airlines - Emirates, Qatar and Etihad - and our trade missions allow us to facilitate relationships with the people who help us sell the best of Britain.”
Annique Labuschagne, Manager GCC Markets at VisitBritain, commented: “Britain is a tourism destination that offers experiences for every taste. From England to Scotland to Wales, we have a vast range of top attractions suitable for families, honeymooners and young travellers from the GCC. We are delighted to see more and more people from this region choose Britain as their holiday destination and are eager to explore the wealth of touristic attractions that are available across the country.”
For more information contact:
VisitBritain Media Teampressandpr@visitbritain.com