The UK saw a 1% increase in hotel arrivals to 72.5 million in 2017, only slightly ahead of France (0.9%), which saw the slowest growth out of Europe's 18 primary markets.
That's according to research by Christie & Co. The property adviser's new European Hotel Investment Trends 2018: connectivity, hospitality & opportunity report, which found that hotel arrivals in Europe as a whole increased by 4.7% during 2017.
Germany maintained the top spot for hotel arrivals in 2017, with year-on-year-growth of 4.2%, ahead of France and Spain. Together the three countries accounted for over half of all arrivals. The highest year-on-year growth was seen in Iceland (12.1%).
Italy has the largest hotel supply with 2.24 million beds, followed by Spain, Germany, France and the UK, correlating with their strong demand, while Portugal demonstrated the highest supply increase since 2016 with 7.7%.
Overnight-to-bed ratios show how supply measures against demand, with all countries apart from Portugal and Austria showing increases, and the highest recorded in Iceland, the Netherlands, Ireland and Spain, showing that there is further opportunity for new supply in these regions.
Anna Friedrich, associate director at Christie & Co, commented: "The findings show that the UK is one of Europe's largest outbound markets and accounts for double digit overnight shares in Iceland, Spain, Portugal and Greece. This exposes these markets to performance decline should UK demand decrease after Brexit."