Importance to the city
Bristol city centre is the hub of its visitor and cultural economy, which grew in value by 37% between 2011 and 2019 to an estimated £1.174 billion, with overseas visitors increasing by 50% in the same period.
Bristol’s visitor economy is significant, with visitor related spend estimated at nearly £1.2bn in 2019, and responsible for around 24,000 jobs. In 2019, there were around 1.9 million domestic staying trips, 13.6 million day-trips and more than 636,000 international visitors, making Bristol the eighth most visited city or town in the UK. As well as leisure and holiday visitors, and those visiting friends and relatives, business visitors and business events are a critical part of the visitor economy. Spend from delegates at business events is estimated to be worth more an estimated £347m with a further £26.1m spent on social events in venues.
Our city was named ‘Rising Star Destination’ by National Geographic Traveller in 2018, International Culinary Destination of the Year by the World Food Travel Association in 2019 and Coolest City in the UK by Rough Guides in 2017.
Sport is also incredibly valuable to the city in terms of income generation, community cohesion and physical activity. In the wider west of England region, it was estimated in 2012 the direct economic value of private sector sport to the West of England was £328.9 million, which supported 8,901 jobs.
On the creative side, 957 filming days were recorded at Bristol locations and/or at The Bottle Yard Studios in 2019-2020, boosting the city’s economy by £17 million.