Wales lacks a “coherent brand” when it comes to attracting overseas visitors.
That’s according to a new report by a committee of MPs.
The Commons’ Welsh Affairs Committee has urged bodies such as VisitBritain and Visit Wales to identify a “brand for Wales that can be marketed effectively”.
The committee found that of the 41 million tourists who visited the UK from overseas in 2019, only one million visited Wales.
The committee said Wales’s profile had been raised through television and film such as Disney+ documentary, Welcome to Wrexham.
They said Visit Wales should be “nimble enough to capitalise” on its popularity.
The report concluded that VisitBritain “did not sufficiently promote Wales in its marketing materials”.
“We question whether VisitBritain has the knowledge and expertise required to successfully promote Wales and its attractions,” the committee said in its report.
The committee also said transport infrastructure was a “hindrance” to tourism in Wales.
Chair of the Welsh Affairs Committee, Stephen Crabb, said there were “missed opportunities”.
“Despite Wales’s countless and unique offerings ranging from sandy beaches and blue seas in Pembrokeshire, to the fastest zip line in the world for thrill-seekers in North Wales, the nation punches below its weight in attracting international visitors,” he said.
“We need a more concerted push to promote Wales and to identify its unique brand that can be sold abroad.”
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A Visit Wales spokesperson said it was “pleased” to see some “positive work” highlighted in the report.
“We look forward to continuing to work with VisitBritain on how Wales is marketed within VisitBritain’s international campaigns, to tour operators, and in sharing of data with industry – which are crucial components of success in this highly competitive industry.”
Patricia Yates, CEO of VisitBritain, said the organisation “promotes Wales across all its global marketing campaigns”.
“We’re working with international travel trade to ensure Wales is sold internationally, this year inviting Welsh businesses on trade missions to China, India and the USA,” she said.
“We will study the findings of the Welsh Affairs Committee closely and continue to work with Visit Wales to build on our partnership.”