Wales Tourism Alliance published its new manifesto this spring on the actions the Tourism Industry should undertake in view of Brexit. The manifesto presents Brexit as an opportunity rather than a series of challenges.
The Welsh Government will have to adapt its policy including its financial support to the sector, some of which receive funding from the European Union.
The Alliance raised some very interesting points that the government should address, one of which is to rethink the current strategy to embrace the full potential of the tourism industry in Wales.
A new plan to follow the ‘Tourism Strategy – A Partnership for Growth’ should be agreed following a consultation with businesses from the sector.
The strategy was first launched in 2013 and outlined a plan for tourism for 2013-2020. It focused on promoting Wales as a brand, on developing new products (more luxury and branded hotels, more well-being facilities, use of historic buildings as hotels, more year round attractions, activities and cultural experiences) and on getting the right people, with the right skills working in the industry.
The Welsh Tourism industry has all the elements to become a major destination and proved that it can attract and host global events like the UEFA Champion’s league Final successfully.
The International passenger survey (IPS) figures published by VisitBritain in April 2017 showed an increase in inbound tourism for the first four months of 2017, with 28% increase in visits and 15% a growth in spending to £54 million. Indeed the weaker pound has encouraged residents to stay in the UK for their holiday, but the destination is also more attractive to tourism markets outside the UK for whom the difference in price will have a bigger impact. Wales has a lot to offer and should take advantage of this trend to attract more tourists and visitors to the country.
 visits up 11% and spend up 14% from 2016