The UK has dropped off the top five list of the World Travel and Tourism Council’s (WTTC) Travel and Tourism markets.
The fall from fifth to eighth place on the ranking, between 2019 and 2020, saw it sustain one of the biggest collapses of the ten largest travel and tourism markets.
Gloria Guevara, WTTC’s president and CEO, said: “With positive news from across Europe about the gradual reopening of borders we hope to see many more countries adopt a more risk-based approach.
“This will restore mobility safely through rapid testing and health and hygiene protocols to support the vaccination rollout. The urgent need to restore international travel is starkly evident following the release of WTTC’s data which shows the global Travel & Tourism sector suffered disproportionately hard due to the pandemic.”
She added: “Globally, countries experienced an average fall in GDP contribution of 49.1%, while the worldwide economy shrank by just 3.7% last year, showing how travel restrictions have dramatically reduced Travel & Tourism’s contribution to economies around the world.
“However, the UK was one of the most heavily impacted of the major Travel & Tourism markets, falling out of the top five to eighth position due to the damaging and ineffective quarantines and unhelpful continuing travel restrictions.”