Spending in the UK by Russian shoppers dropped 17% year-on-year in February, on the back of political unrest and the weakened ruble.
Russia, one of the top spending international markets in the UK, fell behind Nigeria in the rankings of highest spending nations around the world.
According to the Global Blue Tax Free Spend Index, published today, the 17% drop came as a result of the weakening economy and unrest, leaving Russians less inclined to travel.
Russians are consistently among the biggest spenders in the UK, with shoppers spending an average of £669 with each transaction.
In the year to date, Russian spend in the UK has decreased 16% year-on-year. Global Blue said the UK could feel a slowdown in growth from the Russian tourism market as a result of the ongoing dispute between Russia and Ukraine and deteriorating relations with the West.
Gordon Clark, UK country manager of Global Blue, said: “The unstable situation in Russia has been shown to affect tourism spend this year as the weakening economy leaves shoppers disinclined to travel. However, Russia is still one of the top shopper markets in the UK as high net worth individuals are drawn to the UK’s extensive offer of luxury brands, so businesses should have renewed emphasis on strategies to entice these individuals and encourage high level spend.”