UK – While major news outlets have been predicting this week’s Royal Wedding will be watched by up to two billion TV viewers worldwide, over half a million UK adults are expected to attend the event live in Westminster’s environs, according to international business consultancy PwC.
A new PwC economic impact study on the Royal Wedding calculates the commercial benefit to London from visitors’ expenditure during the event to be £107m.
The study is part of PwC’s on-going assessment of the impact of large events on London in the run up to the London 2012 Olympics and also reveals nearly a million people plan to watch Friday’s proceedings on the big screen and a further 20m will watch on TV.
Thirty-seven per cent of visitors plan to stay in the capital only for the day, according to PwC, while one in five will spend two nights. Hotels are expecting 185,000 people to check in for the Royal Wedding, with a further 50,000 staying in in B&Bs. Over 20,000 people will spend upwards of £300 a night.
When asked what they would spend the royal wedding ‘budget’ on if they weren’t travelling to the wedding, 35 per cent of those responding to the PwC survey said ‘general living expenses’ and 52 per cent replied they would either put the money into savings or make debt repayments, which implies the boost for London business will be counterbalanced by a negative impact elsewhere.
Mark Ambler, economist at PwC, said: “Our survey suggests that the wedding will be a great economic boost for London’s economy and a good indicator of the potential economic benefits of the Olympic Games, when more than ten times this number of visitors is expected.”
Visitors to London spent a record £8.6 billion last year, according to a recent International Passenger Survey, as the capital welcomed its highest numbers of tourists and business travellers in four years.
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