The government has announced a Tourism Recovery Plan to help the sector bounce back from the pandemic. It aims to restore domestic tourism activity to pre-pandemic levels by 2022, and international tourism by 2023. New initiatives to boost tourism include a £10 million National Lottery Days Out scheme to support attractions, and a new rail pass to encourage domestic breaks by train. The National Lottery voucher scheme this autumn is aimed at encouraging trips beyond the summer peak season. Lottery players will be given the chance to claim vouchers to redeem at tourist attractions across the UK between September and next March.
A rail pass for “staycationers” will be launched later this year. It will build on the success of the BritRail pass, which to date, has only been sold to international visitors, providing a flat rate all-system ticket allowing flexible travel across the country, as well as providing discounted entry to tourism attractions.
The government says it’s designed to help promote more sustainable leisure travel for domestic tourists. The government also promises to develop a Sustainable Tourism Plan later this year to put the UK 'at the forefront of the global discussion on sustainable travel'. This will look at further measures to reduce the impact of tourism on the environment, whilst balancing the needs of local communities with the economic benefits generated by tourism. The Plan is intended to build on the significant investments in sustainable tourism already underway, such as the completion of the England Coast Path - the longest of its type in the world - and the almost £1 billion investment in electric vehicle charging hubs at service stations, which are aimed at achieving more sustainable travel by private vehicles.
The government notes that the sector has been hugely affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, with cities amongst the most impacted areas. Therefore, £19 million has also been earmarked for marketing campaigns to promote cities and towns across the country, with a £5.5 million domestic campaign already underway run by VisitEngland.
Link for Tourism Recovery Plan: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/tourism-recovery-plan