One in five British holidaymakers say they may visit Tunisia, now that the Foreign and Commonwealth Office has relaxed its travel advice, according to research by World Travel Market London – the leading global event for the travel industry, released today (Monday 6 November) at the event.
A poll of more than 1,000 Brits who have taken a holiday in 2017 asked: “The UK government has recently removed its advice against travelling to Tunisia. How likely are you to visit the country in the future?”
Almost one in 10 (9%) said ‘somewhat likely’; 7% said ‘quite likely’; and 4% said ‘extremely likely’ – giving a total of 20% who felt a trip to Tunisia was on the cards.
More than 45 million overseas holidays were taken by Brits in 2016, so that could mean nine million consumers are considering Tunisia as their summer holiday destination for 2018.
Before the ban in 2015, about 420,000 Brits travelled to Tunisia annually but that fell to just over 23,000 in 2016 due to the restrictions.
The Tunisian National Tourist Office in the UK estimates that numbers will reach 30,000 in 2017, and will more than double in 2018 to 65,000.
As soon as the FO advice was lifted in July, British tour operators such as Thomas Cook started selling holidays to Tunisia again.
The confidence of UK holidaymakers is mirrored among those in the travel trade, who were also surveyed by WTM London.
When asked about which destinations they were planning to have business conversations with, 10% said Tunisia.
Those buyers were then asked if they would sign contracts with Tunisian exhibitors 77% said yes.
Furthermore, 82% of those quizzed in the trade survey said the tourism industry has a responsibility to support countries that face external pressures, such as Tunisia, Turkey and Egypt.
The Tunisian National Tourist Office will be at WTM London with the message that “Tunisia is open for business again”.
It is working to reassure travellers, and developing marketing plans with trade partners to highlight Tunisia’s attractions, such as its wintersun credentials, well-being centres, sightseeing and niche markets.
Tunisia has more than 700 miles of coastline along the Mediterranean; almost 800 hotels; and 10 internationally designed golf courses.
WTM London’s Paul Nelson, said: “The Tunisian government has been very supportive of the country’s tourism industry through its crisis.
“The UK government has worked closely with the Tunisian authorities and when the Foreign Office lifted its travel ban in the summer, it said the Tunisian government has improved protective security in major cities and tourist resorts.
“These efforts mean that UK holidaymakers are keen to return to a destination that has been very popular with Brits for many years.”
For the industry report, there were 1,622 respondents, drawn from the trade around the world. For the consumer report, there were 1,025 respondents, who were representative of the UK population, and who had taken at least one holiday this year.
- Tunisian National Tourist Office stand at WTM London: AF575
About World Travel Market
World Travel Market (WTM) portfolio comprises five leading B2B events across four continents generating more than $7bn of industry deals. The five events are:
WTM London, the leading global event for the travel industry, is the must-attend three-day exhibition for the worldwide travel and tourism industry. Around 51,500 senior travel industry professionals, government ministers and international media visit ExCeL – London every November generating around £2.8 billion of travel industry contracts. http://london.wtm.com/. Next event: 6-8 Nov 2017 – London.
International Golf Travel Market (IGTM) now in its 20th edition, is the meeting place for the global B2B golf travel community. More than 600 golf tourism suppliers join 350 pre-qualified buyers and 100 international press for four days of unmissable pre-scheduled appointments, exclusive networking opportunities and invaluable industry and trend updates. Taking place in a different destination every year, IGTM brings together 1,400 golf tourism professionals from over 65 countries. http://igtm.wtm.com/. Next event: 11-14 Dec 2017 – Cannes.
World Travel Market Latin America now in its fifth edition attracts about 9,000 unique senior executives. The event generates US$ 370 million of new business. Taking place in Sao Paulo Brazil, this show attracts a global audience to meet and shape the direction of the travel industry. More than 7,000 unique visitors attend the event to network, negotiate and discover the latest industry news. http://latinamerica.wtm.com/. Next event: 3-5 April 2018 – Sao Paulo.
World Travel Market Africa launched in 2014 in Cape Town, South Africa. Nearly 5,000 travel industry professionals attend Africa’s leading inbound and outbound travel and tourism market. WTM Africa delivers a proven mix of hosted buyers, media, pre-scheduled appointments, on-site networking, evening functions and invited travel trade visitors. http://africa.wtm.com/. Next event: 18-20 April 2018 – Cape Town.
About Arabian Travel Market (ATM) is the leading, international travel and tourism event in the Middle East for inbound and outbound tourism professionals. ATM 2017 attracted almost 40,000 industry professionals, agreeing deals worth US$2.5bn over the four days. The 24th edition of ATM showcased over 2,500 exhibiting companies across 12 halls at Dubai World Trade Centre, making it the largest ATM in its 24-year history. www.arabiantravelmarketwtm.com Next event 22-25 April 2018 – Dubai.
About Reed Exhibitions
Reed Exhibitions is the world’s leading events business, enhancing the power of face to face through data and digital tools at over 500 events a year, in more than 30 countries, attracting more than 7m participants.
About Reed Travel Exhibitions
Reed Travel Exhibitions is the world’s leading travel and tourism event’s organiser with a growing portfolio of more than 22 international travel and tourism trade events in Europe, the Americas, Asia, the Middle East and Africa. Our events are market leaders in their sectors, whether it is global and regional leisure travel trade events, or specialist events for meetings, incentives, conference, events (MICE) industry, business travel, luxury travel, travel technology as well as golf, spa and ski travel. We have over 35 years’ experience in organising world-leading travel exhibitions.