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Over five million visitors via Gatwick spent £4.7 billion in the UK

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Five and a half million foreign visitors arrived in the UK via Gatwick in 2017 – spending 40.3 million nights in the country, contributing £4.7 billion to GDP and supporting 93,000 jobs – according to a new Oxford Economics report on the airport’s impact on the ‘Visitor Economy’ published today.

In addition, £1.2 billion was added to the UK Exchequer – enough to cover the salaries of 46,000 nurses or 36,000 teachers – through taxes on transactions, wages and profits generated by businesses serving these overseas visitors.

The report, commissioned by the Gatwick Growth Board, also shows that the UK economy receives a £200 million GDP, 4000 job boost every time 100,000 more passengers from Asia arrive at Gatwick – highlighting the importance of the airport’s recent new routes to Hong Kong, Chongqing, Tianjin and Taipei, with other new routes to Asia expected soon.

Passengers visiting from Asia are shown to spend an average £1185 per visit – compared to the £705 overall average – with those arriving from USA (£1021), Australia (£1047) and the ‘Rest of Americas’ (£1117) also spending considerably more.

The report formed the basis of three roundtables – hosted by the Gatwick Growth Board – where national, regional and local stakeholders discussed how Gatwick can grow its contribution to both national, regional and local economies.

The report’s special analysis shows that just over half (56%) of foreign visitors’ overnight stays were in London, a quarter (24%) were across the South East region, with the rest spread around the rest of the UK – boosting spending through airfares, taxis, rail tickets, hotel stays, restaurant meals, retail purchase and visits to leisure and cultural attractions.

Overseas visitors however are only part of Gatwick’s visitor economy as 1.6 million visitors arrived from other parts of UK last year – spending 5.2 million nights – and contributed £588 million to GDP and 12,700 jobs.  These visitors were principally from Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Other findings:

  • More than four fifths of visitors were from Europe – with Spain, Italy and France the top three origin countries – followed by USA
  • Around a fifth of visitors from Germany, Denmark, Holland and Ireland came on business
  • Visitors from Africa (15 nights), Australia (13), Asia (13) and Canada (12) stayed the longest (on average)

Steve Norris, Gatwick Growth Board Co-Chair said:

“As a vital piece of UK infrastructure, Gatwick provides a significant contribution to local, regional and national economies and this report shows that this still has room to grow – both in terms of the number of inbound passengers and the value of each visit. 

“As Gatwick continues to grow, it is our job as the Growth Board to ensure the benefits it brings to the economy are felt, not just nationally, but also by the airport’s regional and local neighbours and these roundtables have provided plenty of positive ideas as to how.”

Baroness Tessa Jowell, Gatwick Growth Board Co-Chair said:

“This report shows just how valuable long-haul visitors arriving through Gatwick are to the UK. The airport already offers over 60 long haul routes but securing more to North and South America, and to Asia, will bring even more high value visitors into the UK economy; growing connections to these markets should be an integral part of Gatwick’s future strategy.”  

Steve Ridgway, Chair of VisitBritain, said:

“Gatwick is an important gateway to the UK and plays a vital role in the country’s thriving visitor economy. Inbound tourism will continue to be a vital component of the UK economy after we’ve left the European Union and VisitBritain welcomes the Gatwick Growth Board’s efforts to secure and grow the airport’s future contribution.“

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Gatwick

Pay ‘takes-off’ for baggage & ground staff at Gatwick

Good news for easyJet ground staff and baggage handlers at Gatwick.

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Almost a thousand easyJet ground staff and baggage handlers at Gatwick airport employed by DHL have negotiated a pay boost worth on average 7.5% over two years.

The workers will also get a bonus worth over £500 a year and an increase in overtime payments, including double time for working on bank holidays. And in a further boost to workers’ terms and conditions the company’s sick pay policy has also been markedly improved.

More news: Police search for man after attack on woman in Crawley

The deal means that a typical worker would be in line for an increase of over £2000 in the first year of the deal including the bonus.

Unite regional officer, Jamie Major said:

“Baggage handlers and ground staff employed by DHL have negotiated a significant boost in pay well above the rate of inflation. During the pay talks Unite and DHL worked constructively to develop a transparent pay strategy which is fair and gives workers the opportunity to progress.

“Unite’s organising strategy has meant that hundreds of new members joined the union which in turn gave Unite more influence during negotiations. This above inflation pay deal once again shows that when pay is falling flat across the economy it pays to be in a union.”

Unite has launched a powerful online tool to help workers secure a fair share of company profits. Unite’s new online tool will mean that in just a few minutes, union reps can generate a professional pay claim. Almost 4000 Unite representatives have already used the Pay Claim Generator.

At the click of a mouse the tool allows union reps to gather the latest up-to-date information from Companies House, the Office for National Statistics and the union’s own database containing the details of tens of thousands of pay deals.

The Pay Claim Generator was designed as part of Unite’s industrial strategy entitled Work, Voice, Pay which is about empowering union members by giving them the tools and support in the workplace to help them win at work.

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