LONDON, May 20, 2015 /PRNewswire/ --
Visitors to London from North America have reached a five-year high as the British capital welcomes 17.4 million international visitors, more than ever before, according to figures released by the UK's International Passenger Survey.
The figures show London welcomed 2.3 million North American visitors in 2014. 13.4% of all international visitors travelled to the British capital from North America, with the majority coming from the USA. The city's royal heritage, culture and world-famous attractions are proving irresistible draws for millions of North American visitors, according to the Mayor of London's international promotional company, London & Partners.
The surge in North American visitors began in 2011 and has increased year-on-year since the 2012 Olympic Games. In 2014 international visitors boosted London's economy by £11.8 billion compared to £11.5 billion in 2013, up 3%, with North American visitors spending £1.9 billion in 2014 compared to £1.8 billion the previous year.
The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: "Our status as the number one destination in the world is surely beyond any doubt, and with incredible attractions like the NFL International Series heading our way we look forward to welcoming many thousands more visitors to London."
A record 58 million people from the UK and overseas visited the city's 40 most popular tourist attractions last year, up 4% compared to 2013, according to the Attractions Monitor, a detailed visitor survey compiled by London & Partners.
One of the most significant trends was an increase in people visiting military exhibitions, which rose by 22% to 3.6 million. The Tower of London's Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red, captured the attention of North America and the rest of the world, with more than 5 million people visiting the display.
This year London has secured some of the world's best exhibitions including Goya: the Portraits at the National Gallery and The World Goes Pop at Tate Modern. The city will also host Formula E, and the NFL International Series.
Gordon Innes, Chief Executive of London & Partners, which runs http://www.VisitLondon.com , added: "London continues to attract record numbers of international visitors. Royal occasions such as the arrival of Princess Charlotte, combined with London's heritage and world-leading cultural offer, is expected to attract many more millions from North America and the rest of the world."
Linton Wadsworth, from Edwardian Group London, says: "We are committed to helping drive forward the city's tourism economy, through ongoing investment and continuous innovation across our properties."
International visitors are the leading driver for growth across London's cultural attractions, accounting for the majority of visits. Later this year VisitLondon.com, in partnership with the GREAT Britain Campaign, will launch its 2nd annual international campaign to promote the impressive breadth of cultural activities happening across the capital.
London's Autumn Season will showcase the incredible season of culture coming to the capital, taking in the world-class events that strengthen the city's reputation as a global cultural powerhouse.
SOURCE London & Partners