SUN ONLINE, AUGUST 25, 2019
COVERAGE FOR LEONARDO HOTELS
TIRED OF LONDON: 3.5 million Brits have never visited London because it’s ‘expensive and crowded’
NEW research has revealed that while London is visited by 30 million overseas tourists every year, as many as SIX per cent of Brits have never been to London – that’s 3.5 million adults who have never set foot in their own capital city.
And according to the study, as many as 38 per cent of those who have not visited the capital, say they probably NEVER will.
A negative perception of the city seems to prevail in Brits who have never visited: half of those who think they won’t ever make the trip say it’s because it’s far too expensive, 31 per cent believe they’d hate the crowds, and 28 per cent say it’s just too far away and they can’t be bothered to make the trip.
And more than a fifth (21 per cent) confess the thought of visiting London stresses them out hugely, nine per cent believe it’s over-rated and wouldn’t live up to the hype, and six per cent reckon that Londoners are just too rude.
The research by Leonardo Hotels, also found that a whopping 40 per cent of Londoners themselves confess they don’t make the most of the city.
And it’s not just London dwellers who admit they don’t fully appreciate the areas in which they live. The study found that a staggering 95 per cent of Brits admit they don’t explore their own area in the same way that tourists do.
In fact, a huge 77 per cent of the nation say they don’t make the most of where they live, with 53 per cent agreeing that Britain has some of the most beautiful countryside in the world but admitting they NEVER get out in it.
And only 10 per cent of people who live in our beautiful rural areas believe they make the most of their surroundings, while just one in ten Brits who live near the coast say that they actually, take advantage of the beaches and attractions that surround them.
When it comes to the capital’s iconic landmarks that Londoners aren’t visiting, less than a third (30 per cent) have been to the city’s highest point The Shard, only a quarter have been inside the Houses of Parliament, and just 32 per cent have taken advantage of the city’s famous open top bus tours.
And 54 per cent have never eaten in Chinatown, 61 per cent have never taken a boat on the Thames, and 57 per cent haven’t ever seen a West End Show.
And a quarter feel like they only really know the area they live in, while 23 per cent say they’d like to take a week off just to explore London.
No surprise then that 30 per cent of Londoners claim that, while they appreciate living in London, they just don’t have time to enjoy it.
And this is despite 32 per cent of London-dwellers believing that it is the best city in the world.
Jason Carruthers, Managing Director of Jurys Inn & Leonardo Hotels UK and Ireland said: “Our research not only reveals the things that people love about London and what draws them to the capital, but also the high number of people who have never visited the capital, some who never want to.
“There’s so much to see and do in the city, so we’re incredibly excited to bring Leonardo Hotels to Central London with three fantastic hotels in amazing locations.
“Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a regular, we’ve chosen locations to ensure you’ll be close to some of the best transport links and most popular tourist spots like St. Paul’s Cathedral, Tower Bridge, The Tower of London, The Shard and more.”
The study also found the biggest motivators to visit London were the historical landmarks (57 per cent), the world-class shopping (52 per cent) and the good range of theatres, concerts and festivals (39 per cent).