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Coronation, Eurovision and tea to entice Gulf travellers to UK

People, Person, Adult Reuters/Ed Sykes
VisitBritain's marketing campaign to attract Gulf tourists features May's coronation in London and Eurovision Song Contest in Liverpool
  • ‘Spill the Tea’ campaign will be in English and Arabic
  • London is one of the most popular destinations for Gulf Arabs

The coronation of King Charles III, Liverpool’s hosting of the Eurovision Song Contest, and Britain’s obsession with drinking tea are some elements set to feature in a marketing campaign to encourage more Gulf travellers to visit the UK this spring.

VisitBritain, the national tourism agency, said spending by GCC-based tourists visiting the UK climbed above pre-pandemic levels for the first time in 2022 and it hopes this growth will continue with the new campaign.

The SAR 5.2 million ($1.39 million) ‘Spill the Tea’ campaign will be in English and Arabic and feature across a mix of advertising channels.

It will focus on British music, coastal attractions, historical treasures and one-off events, such as the coronation in London and Eurovision Song Contest in Liverpool, both taking place in May.

“By showing our warm British welcome and telling the story of our vibrant and varied destinations we want to inspire visitors from the GCC to discover more, stay longer and to explore year-round,” said VisitBritain’s interim deputy director Carol Maddison.

While visitor numbers from the Gulf were still 18 percent below 2019 figures at 202,000 during the second quarter, the amount they spent rose by 7 percent to about £485 million ($585 million).

London is one of the most popular tourist destinations for Gulf Arabs. Around 1.2 million visited the UK in 2019, spending £2.6 billion.

Typically, a Gulf tourist spends a longer amount of time in the UK, averaging up to 12 nights compared with seven for other nationalities.

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