DUBAI: The UK has brewed up a campaign to attract more visitors from Saudi Arabia and the Gulf region.
The “Spill the Tea on Great Britain” campaign is a nod to the common stereotype of the UK being a nation of tea drinkers — and plays on the British idiom of something you like being your “cup of tea”.
Short films and images are used to promote the country’s attractions, from festivals, arts, music and architecture in the campaign run by VisitBritain, the national tourism agency.
British company Tregothnan has created a limited run of “themed teas” that will be available for tasting at VisitBritain promotional events. They include “graffi-tea” in a nod to UK street art, “festival tea” showcasing live music and #NoFilterTea highlighting the country’s camera-friendly landscapes. Monster hunting tea can perhaps be drunk while trying to spot the elusive (some say imaginary) Loch Ness monster in Scotland.
This first phase of the campaign will run until spring and focus on major upcoming events such as the coronation of King Charles and Liverpool’s hosting the Eurovision Song Contest on behalf of Ukraine in May.
“The GCC is an important tourism market for Britain, and we are delighted to be running this dedicated campaign, tapping into motivations for travel this year, to build on the strong recovery we have seen,” said Carol Maddison, VisitBritain’s interim deputy director.
VisitBritain found that discovering new and surprising experiences were high on the wishlist for travelers.
According to its research, almost eight in 10 Saudi visitors were driven to choose their next destination based on unique experiences that they can’t have elsewhere.
Based on these insights, the campaign was designed to focus on what Britain has to offer, from “adrenaline-filled coastal and countryside adventures to iconic summer festivals; street food tours to street art tours to afternoon teas with a magical twist,” Maddison said.
The campaign, which has a budget of more than £1 million (just over SAR5 million), will be featured on social media platforms, radio, print, digital display and digital adverts along Riyadh’s Boulevard.
It will also include dedicated English and Arabic websites.
Additionally, VisitBritain is working with trade partners such as WeGo and media company Matador to amplify the campaign’s reach in the Gulf and drive bookings for spring and summer.
Saudi Arabia is the UK’s 34th largest inbound visitor market and 13th most valuable in terms of visitor spending. In 2019, there were 221,000 visits from Saudi Arabia to the UK, with those visitors spending £627 million on their trips.
Spending in the UK by visitors from Saudi Arabia was forecasted to reach 2019 levels within 2022, with visits expected to exceed pre-COVID levels by 2025.