UK welcomes Great Wallet of China


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The Independent Online

The UK’s shops are hoping to reverse the current downturn in tourism spend with a boost from a massive influx of Chinese shoppers this week.

China’s biannual seven-day Golden Week holiday, which this week centres on Wednesday’s National Day, sees Chinese families travel abroad to shop and sightsee and is set to bring tens of thousands of shoppers to Britain.

The payment processing company Worldpay expects this week to help 2014 reach a record of more than 200,000 Chinese visiting Britain, up from 100,000 in 2010 and an improvement on last years’ 196,000.

Dave Hobday, managing director of Worldpay UK, said: “The Chinese love affair with luxury brands is well documented… London is in a perfect position to take advantage of the Great Wallet of China, and the retail boost that Golden Week brings.”

The influx will be much needed as tourism spend across Europe was down year on year in August as unrest in the Middle East, Russia and Ukraine, as well as Hong Kong protests and the strong sterling and euro all led to shoppers staying at home.