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20 Aug, 2016

Nine out of ten US tourists more likely to visit Britain following Brexit vote

LONDON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–August 17, 2016  – London remains a top destination for US tourists following the EU referendum vote, according to new research, with two thirds of US visitors pledging to return to the capital.

Analysis carried out by London & Partners, the Mayor of London’s promotional company, shows that London’s booming tourism trade is set to continue post-Brexit, as two thirds of Americans who visited in the last two years said they will definitely return due to a more favourable exchange rate.

Meanwhile, 90 per cent of visitors to London from the US agree the capital’s cultural experiences are the best of any city in the world, with the capital’s iconic museums, galleries, attractions and West-End musicals key reasons for visiting.

Some 7.9 million American tourists have been drawn to the capital since 2012, the year the city hosted the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Separate research released today confirms that London is open as a leading international destination with London’s top museums and galleries reporting an 11 per cent increase in visits from the US since 2012.

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, will tonight unveil an exciting programme of cultural exhibitions and events at the launch of London’s Autumn Season at the Science Museum. Supported by the Government’s GREAT campaign, highlights over the coming months will include Twilight Tours at the Tower of London, Wonderlab: The Statoil Gallery at the Science Museum, Michael Clarke Company at the Barbican and The Radical Eye: Modernist Photography from the Sir Elton John Collection at the New Tate Modern.

Sadiq Khan said: “Our city’s world-class museums, galleries and exhibitions have firmly positioned London as one of the most welcoming and culturally rich cities to visit. Not only does our unique cultural scene make a substantial and vital contribution to our city’s economic prosperity, but I’m delighted to see that London’s creative sector plays such an important role in entertaining tourists from across the Atlantic.

“The many millions of visitors who come here time and time again are sending out a clear signal that London is truly open to everyone, and this is the message we will continue to send around the world.”

The research from London & Partners also reveals that taking tours of London’s famous film locations are big cultural pulls for US visitors, examples including King’s Cross station where Harry Potter’s Hogwarts Express departed, or iconic locations used in James Bond’s Skyfall and Hugh Grant’s Notting Hill. Visitors from Britain were particularly attracted to cultural events such as Stevie Wonder at Hyde Park, musicals like Wicked and the BFI Film Festival.

When asked about their ultimate London tour guide, American tourists were in agreement that Her Majesty the Queen would be their travelling companion of choice, closely followed by footballer David Beckham and singer Adele.

Gordon Innes, CEO London & Partners, said: “From the Queen to Adele, Tower Bridge to The Shard, and Picasso to Sir Elton John, London offers one of the most diverse and stimulating cultural experiences of any city in the world.

“With so many new museum openings this year, a stunning array of world class exhibitions and events, the ability to travel 24 hours on the night tube and the city offering better value than ever for international visitors – there has never been a more exciting time to come to London.”

Working with London poet and musician LA Salami, London & Partners has also produced a short film aiming to capture the spirit of the 2016 Autumn Season programme of events – available here