The UK Tourism Survey figures released by VisitEngland reveal that the number of trips taken by domestic travellers in the UK in the first six months of this year remain unchanged compared to 2009, spelling good news for the industry.

Although overall the number of domestic overnight trips made in the first half of 2010 was unchanged compared with last year, differences were apparent by the purpose of the trip: the number of pure holiday trips fell by 3% between January and June; the number of business trips during the same time period also fell slightly by 1%; however the number of visiting friends & relatives rose by 2%, and for the month of June visitor figures increased by 5% compared with last year.

The tourist office's chief executive, James Berresford, said: "Last year was the best ever year for leisure tourism with domestic holiday trips up by 18% in England and 17% in the UK. Despite a slight downturn in holiday tourism this year compared to 2009, England and the UK are still experiencing double digit growth compared to 2008. The industry should be proud of sustaining strong and consistent figures especially in view of a World Cup and ongoing economic uncertainty.” In the past 12 months, 125.97m overnight trips were taken in the UK, 7.8m more than in the 12 months from July 2008 to June 2009 – representing an increase of 7%.

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