BTA reveals £5.4bn loss to UK GDP this week

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The Business Travel Association (BTA), the voice of business travel, has today revealed the UK has lost £5.4 billion in GDP this week due to the unprecedented decline of business travel trips following the Coronavirus pandemic.

New data by the Association shows that in the third week of May 2021, business travel trips from the UK dropped by -89.69% from 2019 pre-pandemic levels (versus the same week in May 2019) – with a reduction of 131,349 business trips in the last seven days. This weekly decrease in business travel trips has cost the UK

Government £5.4 billion across ten international and domestic air routes.
UK GDP lost £4.4 billion from international business travel and a further £1 billion from domestic business travel, equalling a total of £5.4 billion missing from UK GDP this week.

The BTA has partnered with leading travel data provider Travelogix to develop the Business Travel Tracker, analysing the economic value of business travel. The Tracker, launching today, will explore the reduction of business travel per week and its effect on GDP from ten of the top business travel destinations.

Whilst international travel restrictions remain in place, the BTA will share statistics on routes from the UK to: France, Germany, China, the Netherlands, the Republic of Ireland, Singapore, Switzerland, Spain, UAE and the USA.

The route data shows travel restrictions to: France has cost UK GDP £778 million this week; USA has cost UK GDP £598 million this week, and; Germany has cost UK GDP £720 million this week all from the decline of business travel trips.

Despite being on the UK’s greenlist, business travel to Singapore was down 90.58% from 2019 this week.

The Tracker will raise awareness of the importance of business travel to the UK and global economy, the continued dramatic reduction in international travel and bolster Government efforts to get businesses moving once more.

Business travel is a crucial economic enabler for the UK, contributing over £220 billion to UK GDP every year.

Clive Wratten, CEO of the BTA, said: “The impact on our industry following the Coronavirus pandemic has been catastrophic. As a lucrative driver for the UK and the world, it is more important than ever to demonstrate the immense value of the BTA’s members, partners, and the entire business travel sector.

“These figures today powered by Travelogix are staggering, and we are confident our weekly Business Travel Tracker will provide a stark reminder to the Government of the overwhelming significance of business travel to UK GDP.”

Chris Lewis, Founder and CEO of Travelogix, said: “As the representative body for the TMC and business travel community, the BTA’s unwavering support throughout the pandemic has been greatly admired by us, and trade bodies across the industry.”

“That is why we are delighted to be working with them on this important campaign, and we hope our accurate, real-time data will drive global awareness of the impact of the current travel restrictions. We look forward to our data turning positive as the world opens up.”

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