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European cities 'grow in popularity'

29 May 2015 08:50

Munich welcomed more long-haul travellers at the start of the year

Munich welcomed more long-haul travellers at the start of the year

Long-haul travellers are increasingly heading to major European cities, with Munich among the most popular.

Analysis of bookings by travel-pattern monitoring company ForwardKeys reveals a 3.9% jump in the number of holidaymakers from the United States, Australia and China booking trips to Europe so far this year.

It is a trend that is expected to continue over the summer, as millions of people pack their bags and forget about the work routine for a few days.

European travel insurance policies are therefore likely to be common.


Munich experienced 15.3% growth in long-haul travel from January to April, making it one of the favourite destinations for jet-setters.

The likes of Milan, Barcelona and Amsterdam also experienced double-digit growth in the first four months of the year.

Long-haul forward bookings from May to August, meanwhile, are up 3.7% for major European cities.

Amsterdam has experienced a 13.2% increase in bookings for the period, plus Milan is not far behind with growth of 10.9%.

But the situation is not so bright in London.

The figures released by ForwardKeys show long-haul bookings to the capital fell 3.7% from January to April, while they have fallen 1.8% from May to August.

Overseas spending

Data published by the Office for National Statistics last week revealed that spending by overseas travellers on visits to the UK is slowing down this year, following record levels of spending by tourists in 2014.

Expenditure was 10% lower in the first quarter year-on-year, something which could be explained by the fall in bookings to London.

A record 17.4 million overnight visits to London were made by overseas residents in 2014.