London 2012 to prompt Great British homecoming

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• Some 385,000 British expats plan on returning to Britain for the London 2012 Olympic Games • More than one in five expats in Spain are making the trip home • Some 275,000 British expats have tickets for the 2012 Games

Seeing Britain on show throughout the world is a huge source of pride, and it speaks volumes that so many are coming back to see the Olympics.

British expats are set to return en masse to the UK for the London 2012 Olympic Games, according to a survey by expat bank Lloyds TSB International.

The weighted survey of 1,030 British expats reveals that seven per cent are planning to come back to Britain for the Games. This amounts to 385,000 of an estimated 5.5 million* British expats. The highest proportion will come from Spain, where one in five expats (21 per cent) plan to make the trip. However, only six per cent of those living in the USA and three per cent from Canada plan to make the journey. In total, 275,000 expats have tickets for an event.

Many British expats also think that the Games will add to positive perceptions of the UK overseas. 66 per cent of respondents believe that the Olympics will boost Britain’s profile in their country of residence, particularly those living in the US (75 per cent). Currently, almost half (48 per cent) of expats think that Britain enjoys a positive reputation in their country of residence, against only 20 per cent who don’t. This is particularly true in North America and the UAE, with 78 per cent of US-based expats, 65 per cent of Canada-based expats and 71 per cent of UAE-based expats saying that Britain is well-regarded where they live.

National identity is also important to expats, with over a third (36 per cent) saying they feel ‘more British’ and 38 per cent saying they feel more patriotic towards the UK since moving abroad.

“2012 is a monumental year for the United Kingdom,” said Richard Musty, Director – Expatriate Banking, Lloyds TSB International. “With the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and now the London Olympics, Britain is at the centre of the world stage. While there are many things that expats prefer about living overseas, many identify strongly with their home country, some more strongly than when they lived here. Seeing Britain on show throughout the world is a huge source of pride, and it speaks volumes that so many are coming back to see the Olympics.”

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