Visitors from China are well ahead of other nations in credit card spending during the Olympics, according to new figures from Visa.
The weekly spend in the UK from 23 to 29 July on Visa cards reveals that £445.3 million was spent by international visitors.
Visa's weekly London 2012 Games Spend Tracker shows both domestic and international spending in the
This is the second week the Games spending data has been compiled.
The tracker shows that visitors from the USA top the international spending league, accounting for 12.3% of total international spend (£54.6 million).
Tourists from the UAE are spending an average of £181.24 on their cards and Hong Kong card holders £134.89.
Japanese visitors increased the spending by 19% week on week, with a total spend of £32.5 million in the
French, Italian and Australian visitors came third, fourth and fifth.
Retail accounted for 27% of international spending and is up 4.2% year on year among visitors to the UK – services account for 19.2% and Entertainment 13.7%.
Meanwhile, domestic consumer spending on Visa cards in the UK during the week commencing 23rd July was £7bn, up 2% on last year.
And Visa card holders are being inspired by the Games, with sales at sporting goods shops up 10.2% week on week and 6.2% year on year.
The domestic figures also show that spending on food and drink is up 4% on last week, and sales on Visa cards of food and drink in the UK increased 7.3% year on year.
Dr Steve Perry, Commercial Director at Visa Europe, said:
"The spending intentions figures we have seen suggest that day-to-day considerations have been put on hold with consumers looking to make the most of The Games.
"DIY and the purchases we associate with the Household Goods category are on the back burner in favour of entertaining around the Olympics as evidenced by expected increased to Food and Drink sales.
"The capital’s restaurants and bars look set to record a couple of excellent weeks of trading with domestic consumers getting behind The Games."
The domestic spend from the Visa London 2012 Games Spend Tracker complement separate online research into spending intentions amongst GB adults aged 18-64 during the Games Period.
Figures compiled by Markit from their Household Finance Index on behalf of Visa show that respondents are expected to enjoy the Games by spending more on Food & Drink, with 15% of those surveyed forecasting a rise compared to just 3% a reduction (giving a net balance of +12.2%).
Those in the capital look set to back The Games with spending in a range of other sectors with predicted rises in spending on Travel & Recreation (net balance +10.7%) and Eating/Drinking Out (net balance +11.3%). Both of these figures are well above of the national average.
Respondents are also anticipating an increase in spending on Travel & Recreation in the
However, increases in spend will be at the cost of reductions in others with spending on Household Goods (net balance of -13.7%) and Clothing & Footwear (net balance -7.3%) expected to be scaled back during the Olympics.
Respondents expect the overall net impact of the Games on their domestic spending to be broadly neutral.
"After seven years The Games have finally started and the
"Our data also shows that sporting goods shops are showing an increase of 10.2% week on week, 6.2% year on year, so The Games are also creating a sports appetite with
The complete Visa spending report can be accessed here.
The Visa London 2012 Games Spend Tracker tracks both domestic and international spending in the
Domestic spend figures are based on spending on all Visa debit, credit and prepaid cards which are used to make an average of over 1.9 billion transactions every quarter and account for £1 in £3 of all UK spending.
For domestic based indicators – which are based on card issued to UK households – the spending data are adjusted (where applicable) for a variety of factors such as refunds, cash back, card issuance, changing consumer preferences to pay by card, and inflation.
These adjustments mean these data are distinct from Visa Europe’s business performance and are done so with the aim to provide a robust indicator of real
For international data, spending on all Visa debit, credit and prepaid cards from outside the
Therefore direct comparisons with indicators of domestic spend should not be made; the international data should be viewed as indicative of trends in international spending patterns in the