Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s impending wedding could give a boost of almost £500 million ($680 million) to the U.K. economy, according to a report published by Reuters. This is due to all the royal fans who will flock to Windsor Castle from around the world. (Brits might celebrate the occasion, too).
Business valuation consultancy Brand Finance estimates that "approximately £200 million ($271 million) will come from tourism, travel, [and] hotels," according to the company’s chief executive, David Haigh.
According to his calculations, an additional £150 million ($2.5 million) will be spent on parties to mark the historic occasion, and £50 million ($68 million) could come from themed merchandise such as shirts, hats, and of course, the classic commemorative dishes. England would also get around £100 million ($136 million) worth of free advertising around the world.
Other figures in the tourism industry agree that the royal wedding will bring an influx of interest. "It’s going to be a massive boost for the economy. It’s going to be great to see so many people here for the wedding and actually to host the wedding itself," Andrew Lee, manager of the Harte and Garter hotel opposite Windsor Castle, told Reuters.
Tourist agency VisitBritain estimates that 41.7 million people will visit the United Kingdom in 2018.
The "royal effect" certainly isn’t a new phenomenon. According to the Office for National Statistics, an additional 350,000 tourists visited the U.K. in April 2011 for the marriage of Prince William and Kate Middleton, in comparison to the same month the previous year.
After confirming their engagement in November last year, Harry and Meghan will tie the knot on Saturday, May 19, at St. George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle. Although further details about the ceremony are yet to be announced, it has already been confirmed that proceedings will be broadcast ed to viewers around the world.
This post was written by Katie Rosseinsky. For more, check out our sister site Grazia.