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01/02/2018

Tourism Intelligence – December 2017

Latest tourism business data shows that the biggest success stories in 2017 came from the attractions sector, both for overall visits and for visits made with a York Pass. There were 3,140,679 visits to York’s attractions in 2017, which is the city’s second best year since we began recording this more than 10 years ago. More than half a million of these visits were to attractions which had re-opened to the public at some point during the year following refurbishment programmes, making the total number of visits made to attractions 19% higher than throughout 2016.

When we compare only those attractions which were open to the public in both 2017 and 2016 (as per the standard methodology also used by Visit England), visits to attractions were 5% higher year on year. In December, the number of visits were 15% higher than in December 2016, with those attractions with Christmas events and exhibitions benefitting the most from these extra visitors.
Visits made to attractions with a York Pass now account for 3.4% of all attraction visits (up from 2.3% in 2016), are grew by 55% year on year to reach a huge 93,888 visits.

The proportion of hotel rooms occupied has shown another monthly decline (-4%) vs December 2016, however average room rates have held strong and continued to grow throughout the whole year (+3% vs December 2016). Despite the declining room occupancy rates in the second half of the year, overall 1.4% more hotel rooms were occupied than for the whole of 2016 thanks to the strong occupancy rates in the first half of the year, with 79.7% of hotel rooms occupied in 2017. The annual average room rate also grew, by 2.4% to £102.39 vs 2016.
Conference enquiries through VisitYork4Meetings have dropped by a third in 2017 with 330 enquiries generated by VisitYork4Meetings, following a record year in 2016.

City centre footfall was on a par with 2016, and showed 4% growth in December, bucking the national trend of declining city centre footfall in the run up to Christmas. Footfall through the Visit York Information Centre reached 25,595 people in December and 391,813 in total throughout the whole year. When compared to December 2016, VIC footfall dipped by 8%, although this figure excludes those served in the Chalet on Parliament St throughout the York Christmas Festival.


Summary of December tourism performance indicators:
• 79% of hotel rooms occupied
• £112.67 average hotel room rate
• 171,562 visits to attractions which were also open in December 2016, plus an additional 25,066 visits to attractions which were closed to the public a year ago
• 2,621 visits to attractions using a York Pass
• 3 conference and event enquiries generated by the VisitYork4Meetings conference desk
• 123,900 sessions on www.visityork.org (including on the mobile site) and 8 accommodation bookings made through visityork.org
• 25,595 customers through the Visit York Information Centre

Summary of 2017 tourism performance indicators:
• 80% of hotel rooms occupied
• £102.39 average hotel room rate
• 2,768,515 visits to attractions which were also open in 2016, plus an additional 372,164 visits to attractions which were closed to the public a year ago
• 93,888 visits to attractions using a York Pass
• 330 conference and event enquiries generated by the VisitYork4Meetings conference desk
• 1,588,155 sessions on www.visityork.org (including on the mobile site) and 510 accommodation bookings made through visityork.org
• 391,813 customers through the Visit York Information Centre

To find out any more about our Research and Insights or for specific tourism intelligence enquiries, contact Make It York’s Senior Research and Insight Executive, Zoe Rawson Email: zoe.rawson@makeityork.com