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Ports: Overseas Visitors

Volume 485: debated on Wednesday 17 December 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what research his Department has commissioned on the impressions made by UK ports of entry on foreign visitors. (242588)

Welcome is one of the key strands of ‘Winning’ the tourism strategy for 2012 and beyond. In addition, the Welcome to Britain initiative has identified that improvements to our welcome are needed at ports of entry. VisitBritain, in partnership with England's regional development agencies and other members of the Welcome to Britain Steering Group, are currently running a pilot programme at Bristol airport, Manchester airport and Portsmouth port which focuses on improving the welcome at ports of entry. The pilot will be completed in early 2009, with the intention to roll out the scheme further.

Also, VisitBritain is measuring customer satisfaction through additional questions, on the topic of welcome, in the Civil Aviation Authority's international passenger survey. The survey, aimed at international passengers departing from major airports, is in its third wave, with a year end set of results due at the end of April 2009.