Following years of back-and-forth discussions, London could finally become a 24-hour city with the arrival of its long-awaited round-the-clock London Underground services this weekend. But has it arrived too late?
London's "Night Tube"—which will operate 24 hours on Fridays and Saturdays from August 19—is expected to help provide a £77 million boost to the economy per year in the future, while supporting around 2,000 permanent jobs; according to a new report by London First and EY, and the Mayor of London.
In fact, according to the same report, London's "24-hour economy" could contribute close to £30 billion ($39.2 billion) to the U.K. capital each year by the year 2030, and support as much as 790,000 jobs. At present, the city's night-time economy is valued at up to £26.3 billion per year, and directly supports 723,000 workers.
With London being one of the top city destinations in the world, attracting close to 18.4 million international visitors last year according to Euromonitor International; the introduction of the Night Tube is likely to deliver more opportunities for the city, one of its analysts told CNBC.
"The capital offers a wide variety of attractions which are supported by an extensive transport system, ensuring that tourists can get around easily. While the night tube is a positive development for the city, it is not expected that this alone will draw in more tourists," Euromonitor International Travel Analyst, Wouter Geerts told CNBC via email.
"However, it is likely to offer opportunities for London establishments like bars, concert halls, theaters, sport arenas etc., which currently deal with an outflow of customers trying to catch the last tube."