UK Travel Industry Assess Effect of Prince William and Kate Middleton Royal Wedding

Prince William and Kate MiddletonThe coming wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton has the travel agents and tour operators concerned that people might delay their holidays, as this event is expected to have the same impact as this year’s world cup among the Britons. Such an effect, added to the effect of the ash cloud and the earlier mentioned World Cup could seriously damage tourism agencies’ business.

It’s fair to say, as we see with major sporting events, it may cause people to delay booking their holidays until after the wedding takes place,” said Sean Tipton, the spokesman for the Association of British Travel Agents (Abta).

Mike Greenacre, the managing director of Co‑operative Travel, which has 400 travel agencies across Britain, said it was too early to assess the impact. We haven’t experienced anything on this scale since Charles and Diana were married.

However, in the opinion of Thomson, the UK’s largest tour operator, the impact would have been greater if the wedding date would have been chosen during summer time.

Ian Bradley, spokesman for Aito, the Association of Independent Tour Operators, believed there would be a small dip, but said: I wouldn’t imagine it will be anything significant. While these two [William and Kate] are likeable, it’s not going to have the same impact as when the Queen or Prince Charles and Diana got married. It’s not a national event like it used to be, and people can watch it just as easily in their hotel room in Mauritius.

Indeed, Thomson said the majority of its foreign hotels will show the event on television and many will hold celebrations, so its customers can “enjoy the occasion in a relaxed holiday atmosphere”.

As the monarchy is a great tourist attraction, bringing an income of over £500 million per year, the inbound travelling is expected to greatly increase.

“The benefit of a royal wedding year is likely to outstrip [any loss],” said Sandie Dawe, chief executive of VisitBritain.

“William and Kate are a modern couple. They go to nightclubs and they are outdoor people, which gives us the chance to talk about these activities on offer to overseas visitors. It is the most wonderful publicity boost.”

“The youth and vigour of the couple is very attractive. Millions of people around the world are certain to see the wedding as the perfect moment to come to Britain.”

Romantic breaks and special couples attractions have been prepared by tours operators for tourists that plan to visit Kenya, the country where the royal proposal took place. Also there are high hopes of the royal honeymoon being copied.

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