Advantage research highlights average pre-holiday spend for brits and importance of outbound travel to UK economy

  • Average UK adult will spend £200 or more on goods and services before going on holiday according to new research by Advantage
  • £80bn overall GVA impact to the UK economy from international travel
  • Office of National Statistics (ONS) cited consumer spend on outbound travel through travel agents, tour operators and airlines as a main driver for the UK economy

Ahead of its annual conference in Benidorm this weekend, The Advantage Travel Partnership, the UK’s largest independent travel agent partnership, has released research* that shows the average UK adult will spend £200 or more on goods and services, such as clothes and airport parking, before leaving the country to go on holiday.

With tens of millions of overseas holidays planned in 2023, there will be billions of pounds ploughed into the UK economy as a result of the outbound travel market. To illustrate this significant and critical contribution the outbound travel market has in the country’s economy, Advantage has released the Holiday Purchase Timeline.

It’s also based on data from ABTA’s 2022 International Travel: Powering the UK Economy report** that indicated consumers spend £49bn each year in UK businesses, on travel-related purchases before making an overseas trip. The outbound travel sector at large facilitates £80bn of revenue per year for the UK’s economy.  

Advantage’s nationwide research also showed that people in the North East are the biggest spenders on their pre-holiday purchases, spending an average of £220 before jetting off from the UK. They were closely followed by Londoners in their spending. According to the research travellers in the South East appear to be more frugal in their pre-holiday spending compared to other regions, but still splurge an average of around £150 ahead of travelling outside the UK.

Chief Executive of The Advantage Travel Partnership, Julia Lo Bue-Said, said: “Most people, including the government, assume that the outbound travel sector (namely travel agents and tour operators) generates more revenue for other countries than it does the UK. Our research amongst UK adults about their average spend and the figures illustrated in our infographic, show that the opposite is true.. When Brits travel, they don’t just spend on the holiday itself and actually make a wide range of other purchases before they even get to their point of departure that deliver revenue to a broad range of economic stakeholders in towns and cities around the country.

“There is now the opportunity for the UK government to work closely with the outbound travel industry, building on our strong economic record to ensure continued growth and development. As part of this, we continue to call for the inclusion of outbound travel in the remit of an individual minister in the Department for Transport. This will deliver strong channels of communication on which a collaborative working relationship can thrive, leading to good policy decisions that secure the future of our industry.”

The Office of National Statistics (ONS) announced, earlier this year, that a ‘sizeable jump [in revenue] on holidays and flights   stopped the UK falling into recession, citing consumer spend on outbound travel through travel agents, tour operators and airlines as a main driver for the UK economy.

Downloadable infographic available here:


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