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Leicester City’s shock league win could boost Britain’s football tourism

By Jak Phillips    12 May 2016
Leicester City captain Wes Morgan and manager Claudio Ranieri lift the trophy as the team celebrate winning the Barclays Premier League / Nick Potts/PA Wire/Press Association Images

The value of football tourism to the UK’s visitor economy could be in line for a boost following Leicester City’s historic Premier League title win, according to tourism experts.

Football is the number one sporting draw for international tourists to Britain and in 2014 brought in £684m worth of spending from international tourists.

VisitBritain director Patricia Yates believes that Leicester can expect a visitor boost with the city now on the global football tourism map.

“Leicester City’s fantastic win is truly the stuff of legends and has thrust the players, the fans, the city and Britain as the ‘home of football’ into the global spotlight,” said Yates.

“Football has mass international appeal and a global fan base of billions and we know that people like to visit the home of their sporting heroes. We encourage visitors from all over the world to travel to Britain and enjoy a Barclays Premier League football match with our Football is GREAT campaign, as part of our drive to get tourists out exploring more of regional Britain.”

VisitBritain’s 2015 report – Football tourism scores for Britain – highlighted the valuable role of the Premier League as a global draw for visitors to Britain and its importance in attracting visitors outside the peak summer season.

It showed that, in 2014, 800,000 international visitors went to a football match during their trip, almost one in every 43 visitors, and a seven per cent increase from 2010. Visitors who attended a football match as part of their trip spent an average of £855, compared to £628 for visitors who did not attend a match.

Overall, Leicester received 155,000 international visits in 2014 with numbers showing steady increases in recent years, with 130,000 visits in 2012 and 145,000 in 2013.

Last year set a record for overall inbound tourism to Britain with 35.8m visits, four per cent up on 2014. Comparing growth over the last five years shows that there were six million more visits in 2015 than 2010, an increase of 20 per cent.

Leicester City  football tourism  VisitBritain 
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