Latest Tourism Intelligence - March 2014
City wide tourism performance for March 2014 was mixed when compared with March 2013, due to Easter falling later (in April) this year. As a result 8 of the large attractions reported an average drop in visitors numbers of 13%, to 169,716 from 194,182 and 13 of the small attractions reported an average dip of 1%, to 18,583 from 18,689, in comparison with March last year. However, comparing March 2014 to 2012 (which was the last time Easter fell in April), shows a rise in visitors to large attractions of 10% for March 2014.
Coupled with a rise in hotel room occupancy of 6%, to 81% (March 2014 v 2013) and also city centre and Visitor Centre footall, it appears that March 2014 has been another strong month for tourism in York. Once the April data has been gathered, we will be able to fully understand the Easter performance this year. Through www.visityork.org the number of accommodation bookings made in March 2014 online were 5% lower than in March 2013. Despite this, the number of nights booked was 58% higher than last year, showing we are achieving our aim of targeting longer staying visitors.
Results for the first quarter of the year (January to March) to date now reveal a solid start to the year, with increases in almost all sectors. Hotel room occupancy is recorded at 72%, some 8% higher than for the first quarter of 2013, and average room rates are 4% higher, to £69.79 for the quarter. Year to date visits to the large attractions were down very slightly, by just 2%, but the smaller attractions fared better with a 10% rise in visitor numbers. Visits towww.visityork.orgalso grew by 10% in the period from January to March compared with the same period last year, and footfall through the Visitor Centre grew even more, by 18%, reaching a total of 87,549 visitors, compared with 74,126 in the first three months of the previous year.
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