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Half a million international visitors have descended on England and Wales for the biggest global event in rugby, with an anticipated spending windfall benefitting our GDP to the tune of nearly £1 billion, making it the biggest single boost to UK tourism since the Olympics.

As the 20 nations go head-to-head, Booking.com data reveals that the tournament has brought a range of different nationalities en masse to some less-travelled destinations in the UK, bringing their currency (and revelry) with them.

Unusually, visitors from France are painting the town bleu in Milton Keynes, while Leicester is receiving an unprecedented amount of visitors from Argentina and Canada as the King Power Stadium plays host to group stage matches.

Accommodation booking data means Newcastle is welcoming a Rand bonanza as large groups of South Africans descend on the city for the group stages. According to the latest Booking.com figures, South African fans are staying in the most clustered group of accommodations out of all visitors, so expect a Springbok shindig if you’re in the area.

Exeter meanwhile is seeing the streets paved with gold (and green) for Australian travellers, with the highest proportion of visitors from outside the UK descending on the town and contributing to the local Devon economy.

Elsewhere Gloucester, usually an under-visited part of the UK, welcomes travelling from JapanArgentinaUSA and Ireland as the group stages commence. Expect the Guinness to flow here like never before – accommodation bookers from Ireland have given the most ‘party’ endorsements on Booking.com to destinations across the world. Equally, Cardiff has seen a significant uptick in visiting Irish bookers when compared to the same period last year due to games at the Millennium Stadium.

 


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Rugby fans march down the road-less-travelled in the UK
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