Amadeus has unveiled a range of travel data trends, based on actual global air reservations, which detail the impact of the London 2012 Olympics on aviation.
With approximately 50 days to go before the Games, the findings provide a country-by-country view of where visitors to London during the Olympics period are coming from.
The data shows that booking figures for the Olympics period, made by May 12th 2012, are 13 per cent higher than in 2011.
Key trends from the research reveal the USA is the single biggest source nation for traffic to the Olympics, accounting for 19 per cent of total expected arrivals – a 12 per cent increase on 2011.
Germany is the second largest source market, responsible for eight per cent of total expected arrivals.
Interestingly, BRICS nations (Brazil, China, India, Russia and South Africa) are emerging as important source nations for long-haul travel to London during the Olympics period.
Europe is the source region for the greatest proportion of arrivals to London during the period of the Games, accounting for 46 per cent of total expected arrivals, and North America is second with a 23 per cent share; this represents an increase of 18 per cent and ten per cent on the same period in 2011 respectively.
The third biggest market, Asia, the source region for nine per cent of arrivals, has seen a significant increase of 27 per cent on 2011 bookings.
From the Opening Ceremony onwards, throughout the duration of the Olympic Games, London will experience a high level of occupancy (i.e. number of visitors staying in London), with numbers seven per cent higher than last year for the period between the Opening and Closing ceremonies.
The greatest increase in occupancy compared with 2011 is between August 4th-8th.
It also seems Londoners intend to remain in the city and enjoy the spectacle during the Olympics period: departures to any destination from London for the period before the Opening Ceremony are five per cent below 2011 levels.
Across the whole summer (from July 2nd–September 2nd) two per cent fewer Londoners will leave the city than in 2011.
Holger Taubmann, senior vice president, distribution at Amadeus, said: “This data highlights the significant opportunity for travel providers and businesses in London over the Olympics period, particularly during the dates when occupancy will surge compared with last year, that is, between August 4th-8th.
“Businesses, especially those within the leisure and retail sectors, will have big opportunities by catering to the needs of travellers from all over the world this summer.
“The data also indicates another period that will be of crucial importance to UK-based travel sellers: the weeks after the Closing Ceremony, when many Londoners will depart from the city.”
Amadeus is a leading travel technology partner and transaction processor for the global travel and tourism industry.
The research was carried out in conjunction with Forward Data SL, a market research and consulting company publishing ForwardKeys.com.