UK continues to outperform Europe for sales of luxury goods to tourists


The UK is still Europe’s fastest growing market for tourist spending on luxury goods according to the latest Global Blue European Tax Free Shopping (TFS) sales performance report.

The month of May is particularly important for retailers selling to Chinese visitors, and tourists from the Asian powerhouse have been beating a path to Britain.

In the first five months of 2017, sales of luxury goods priced between £2000 and £5000 increased by 84%. Sales of goods priced at over £5000 rocked by £5000 in the January to May period.


It wasn’t just the Chinese battering their credit cards. Sales of luxury goods to all other nationalities rose by 41% in the UK in the five months to May.

Performance has been strong across all major European markets, with a fifth consecutive positive month in May driving year-on-year sales growth of +20%.

Average spend remained stable across the continent during May at +2% year-on-year, while growth was driven by na 18% increase in transactions.


During May, European department stores saw large volumes of transactions, driving a year-to-date sales rise of 20%.

The strong performance of European markets during 2017 is reflected across all spend categories, with watches and jewellery sales up by +14% (calendar year-to-date) fashion and accessories sales increased by +32%.

Global Blue specialises in tax free shopping and currency processing services for retailers.

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