A record 31.5 million Great Britain residents and international tourists came to the city in 2015 – which is an increase of 20 per cent when compared to five years ago.
London keeps setting new tourism records. Every year since the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games there has been an increase in the number of international visitors coming to the city.
Figures released by the Office for National Statistics, International Passenger Survey, show there were 18.6 million international visits in 2015 compared to 17.4 million in 2014, a previous record year (a seven per cent increase)
Separate data from the Great Britain Tourism Survey carried out by UK tourism body VisitEngland reveals that GB residents made 12.9 million visits to London last year, another new record.
International and GB visitors also spent £15 billion on hotels, restaurants, shopping and attractions – an increase of 35 per cent compared to 2010.
Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan said: “It is fantastic that more people than ever before are opting to visit London, to sample the best of our capital and the best of Britain. London has something for everyone and an appeal that clearly extends across the globe.
“I’ve pledged to do all I can to support our vital tourism industry so London continues to be a top choice for travellers.”
Exhibitions, theatre and major events including Cosmonauts: The Birth of Space Age, at the Science Museum,Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty at the V&A, The Elephant Man at the Theatre Royal Haymarket and the 2015 Rugby World Cup all helped to draw visitors to the city.
This year is set to be another momentous year as the UK celebrates 400 years of Shakespeare’s lasting legacy, events to mark the Queen’s 90th birthday and Tate Modern opening a major new extension, which is being hailed as the most important new cultural building in the UK since the British Library in 1998.