Edinburgh wheel

Edinburgh must expand to support a booming tourist market and compete internationally

Edinburgh is the UK’s second city for international tourism, with data indicating that it welcomed 1.7 million international overnight visitors in 2016, up 7.6 per cent on the previous year, and placing it above other European cities such as Copenhagen (1.6 million overnight visitors) and Hamburg (1.5 million overnight visitors). These guests spent a total of US$1.1 billion, highlighting the importance of the sector to the city’s economy.

While Edinburgh ranks second to London in terms of number of international arrivals, the relative ‘impact’ generated from overseas arrivals is more pronounced. For example, relative to the city’s urban population, there are 3.36 international arrivals per capita, which exceeds the 1.93 recorded for London (see graph below). In fact, Edinburgh ranks 8th globally for international arrival ‘penetration’, exceeding larger visitor markets such as Bangkok, Singapore and Kuala Lumpur.


Edinburgh is the UK’s second city for international tourism, with data from Mastercard indicating that it welcomed 1.7 million international overnight visitors in 2016, up 7.6 per cent on the previous year, and placing it above other European cities such as Copenhagen (1.6 million overnight visitors) and Hamburg (1.5 million overnight visitors). These guests spent a total of US$1.1 billion, highlighting the importance of the sector to the city’s economy.

While Edinburgh ranks second to London in terms of number of international arrivals, the relative ‘impact’ generated from overseas arrivals is more pronounced. For example, relative to the city’s urban population, there are 3.36 international arrivals per capita, which exceeds the 1.93 recorded for London (see graph, above). In fact, Edinburgh ranks 8th globally for international arrival ‘penetration’, exceeding larger visitor markets such as Bangkok, Singapore and Kuala Lumpur.

In order for Edinburgh to remain attractive as a visitor destination, with increasing competition internationally from within Europe, delivering new hospitality and retail space as part of wider attractive mixed use environments is imperative.

Further information

Read more: Edinburgh must expand to support a booming tourist market and compete internationally

 

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