The current government involvement in tourism in the UK.

Essay by rgarmesUniversity, Bachelor'sC+, October 2003

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The tourism industry is believed to be the world's largest industry, and as such, involves a vast array of public and private sector organisations. This assignment will look at the types of government organisations that structure the UK tourism industry.

It is important to look at the volume and value of the tourism industry first, so that the reader can appreciate the scope of tourism in the UK. Identifying the roles and policies of the public organisations, will show the nature of government involvement, and the section on VisitBritain will highlight the recent changes to tourism structure.

This will give the reader a broader picture of the UK tourist industry, and will allow an understanding of the motives behind government involvement, which will provide the focus for the next section.

The conclusion will highlight the areas studied in the assignment, and a give a brief summary as to its findings.


2.1 The volume and value of tourism in the UK

2.1.1 Introduction

Tourism can be defined as:

'The activities of persons travelling to and staying in places outside their usual environment for not more than one consecutive year for leisure, business or other purposes' (World Tourism Organisation (WTO), 1991).

Therefore, we can ignore the common myth that 'tourism is only leisure holidays', and see that it also includes business travel, day trips, and visiting friends and relatives (VFR).

Many people also believe that tourism is only international, when in fact, 80% of all tourism in 2001 was domestic, and it contributed £26.1 billion to overall spending by UK residents. This figure was achieved through the 163.1 million trips made within the UK, most of which lasted one to three nights (, visited 28/02/03). This tells us that...