New figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) have revealed overseas travellers made just 398,000 trips to the UK in the second quarter of the year.
This was down a staggering 96 per cent from the same period last year.
The ONS placed the blame for the decline squarely on the Covid-19 pandemic.
In total, overseas residents spent £218 million on their visits to the UK in in the second quarter of the year.
The figure was again down 97 per cent on the same period of 2019.
UK residents made 939,000 visits abroad in over the three-month period, which was 96 per cent fewer than the corresponding period the previous year.
They spent £402 million on visits abroad.
The ONS said data collection by the International Passenger Survey was suspended for the period covered, so the figures are based on administrative sources and modelling. Commenting on the data, and ABTA spokesperson said: “Today’s ONS figures for overseas travel in April to June 2020 lay bare the devasting impact Covid-19 has had on the industry.
“While the figures relate to the first lockdown period, since then the industry has had to deal with constantly changing travel advice and quarantine measures, as well as local lockdowns, meaning there has been very limited scope for recovery in the travel industry.
“As a result tens of thousands of jobs have already been lost and many businesses have closed their doors for good.
“In addition to tailored financial support for travel companies, the government needs to implement an effective testing regime and introduce a fully regionalised travel corridor approach by the time lockdown is lifted to help people feel more confident to travel.
“It also needs to introduce flexibility into the furlough scheme to support businesses who need to have staff processing refunds, but won’t be generating income.”
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