From the London Independent… (bolding is travelmagpie’s)
Tourism chief: 2012 visitor boom unlikely
Any increase in the number of tourists visiting the UK during this Olympic year would be “against all the odds”, the chairman of VisitBritain has warned.
Speaking on the fringes of the World Travel & Tourism Council conference in Tokyo, Christopher Rodrigues warned that any country that holds a major global event sees a decline in visitors and tourism spending that same year. Mr Rodrigues’s words carry weight, as his agency is the public body tasked with marketing the UK across the globe.
“A flat year of year-on-year growth would be a good outcome,” he said. “A flat year would mean that we’ve done well against all the odds, all the history.”
Mr Rodrigues said that he believes there will be spare hotel rooms in the capital during the Games, despite the thousands of people who will descend on London to watch the two-week sporting jamboree. That increase will be offset by a decline in business travel, as major corporations will choose to hold their meetings and conferences in other parts of the world.