CPT has issued a dire warning about the potential collapse of the coach sector this winter which it claims could wipe almost 10 per cent off the value of UK tourism. The trade body has written to tourism minister Nigel Huddleston calling on him to ensure the sector is supported through the winter in recognition of the role it plays in the tourism industry.
CPT estimates that coach travel results in over 23 million tourism visits a year and contributes £14billion to the UK economy. It adds that without government support, 27,000 jobs from the sector and 4 out of 10 operators could be lost by April 2021.
“Allowing the coach travel sector to collapse would be a dereliction of duty from the government,” says CPT head of policy Alison Edwards.
“The sector is vital to continued growth of UK tourism by ensuring that millions of people can visit attractions across the UK each year.”
CPT is calling for extensions to finance holidays by 12 months to ensure that no coaches are repossessed during the winter and a moratorium on repossession of homes connected with finance agreements. It is also asking for the coach travel sector to be treated as part of the leisure sector and be able to access any support available to leisure businesses.
Tourism Alliance director Kurt Janson adds: “Coach operators are a large and vital component of the UK’s world-class tourism industry. Whether it be taking overseas visitors on tour, students on educational trips, transferring conference delegates, bringing sports fans to games or providing day trips for people to visit attractions or see a West End show, they bring revenue and jobs to every destination they visit.”