After this week's riots in London, city officials are taking great pains to stress this message to tourists: We're still open for business. Press release after press release has described London as "safe" and "resilient," and the riots as "not typical."
London has good reason to be engaging in damage control. There's a lot at stake: London is the world's most popular tourism destination with 26 million annual visitors. Tourism accounts for about 8 percent of England's GDP. More than 250,000 people in London work in the tourism business, a major driver of the city's economy.
There are no statistics yet whether people are cutting back their travel plans. Those won't be available for a few months. The bigger question is: Will this week's violence tarnish London's image overall?