The public transport might be lacking. The weather might be more miss than hit. The spotted dick might be worrying. But expats are still proud to be British.
In a recent survey 38% of expats felt more patriotism towards Britain since moving away, and this year more expats then ever have been returning for holidays at home.
Who can blame them? It’s been a good year of celebrations in Britain. First we had the Queen’s Jubilee, then we had Wimbledon, and now the Olympics are coming to town. As Director of Lloyds Expatriate banking Richard Musty stated: ‘Britain is at the centre of the world stage’. And about time too!
Recent research by Lloyds TSB International suggests that almost 7% of all British expats will be returning to Britain at some point during the Olympics, with an estimated 275,000 tickets already bought.
Lloyds are basing these assessments on the results of a sample survey which was issued to over 1,000 Brit’s scattered over 10 popular expat locations.
With approximately 21% returning for the Olympics, Spanish expats appear to be most eager to abandon the sun and reclaim Britain.
Farther flung expats in Canada and the U.S. will make a much poorer showing; just 3% and 6% respectively have made plans to visit.
It was also revealed that the Olympics actually put some expats off returning to British shores over the summer, whilst others are delaying trips home in order to avoid strained public transport and overcrowding.
Despite this, the survey also predicted that by the end of the 2012 games 385,000 expats will have stopped off for a pot of tea and a slice of home.
Richard Musty explains this expat invasion: ‘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.’
Of those surveyed, 66 % felt that the games would give Britain’s image a boost, and potentially make it more appealing as an expat destination.
So, for now, forget those white sandy beaches. This summer, with the Olympics raising spirits at home and raising opinion abroad, Britain is the place to be.