12 Aug 2014
Stansted Airport and Visit East Anglia have announced details of an exciting joint initiative ‘The Stansted Tourism Forum’ that brings together the expertise of tourism representatives from across the region in a partnership to help boost inward leisure and business travel.
The tourism industry in East Anglia is worth around £6bn, employing over 100,000 people with overseas visitors making a significant contribution to the overall economic value. Stansted is the region’s major international airport and primary gateway for European visitors, serving over 160 direct connections and welcoming more than 18.5million passengers a year, over 50% of which are foreign visitors to the UK.
The new tourism forum brings together representatives of Stansted Airport, Visit East Anglia, Visit Essex, Herts Chamber of Commerce, Abellio Greater Anglia, Hertfordshire and Cambridge Country Councils to work in partnership to maximise opportunities for inbound tourism and boost the regional economies.
One of the first areas of focus will be the business conference market, tapping into Stansted’s inbound flight connections that make it convenient to bring delegates together in one place and creating packages to include transport arrangements, venues across the region and tourist attraction add-ons.
Greater support also needs to be given to the relatives of large student populations on the doorstep of Stansted wanting to arrange both short and long-term visits; and work will be done to help create packages to accommodate those inbound travel plans.
Speaking about the new forum Stansted Airport’s Managing Director, Andrew Harrison said:
"Stansted plays a very important role linking this region to over 160 direct scheduled connections across 30 countries that are vital for business and leisure passengers, but we also need to give better support to the inbound travel market. We have ambitious plans to attract more airlines and offer even more choice of routes so I’m very excited to be involved with the new Stansted Tourism Forum that has a clear focus on boosting the inbound travel market to the region and helping maximise the full potential of this dynamic and exciting part of the UK."
Chief Executive Officer for Visit East Anglia, Keith Brown said:
"We’re delighted to work in partnership with Stansted Airport to help grow the visitor economy across the region and hope this initiative will make the airport even more attractive to the inbound market and support Stansted’s efforts to secure new airlines and routes. Overseas visitors generally stay longer, putting more into the economy and with East Anglia’s offer of unrivalled tourism experiences, from world class cities and towns to the best of the English countryside, together with the investment taking place to improve services and facilities at Stansted , this is going to be a powerful combination."