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Scotland gets ‘India Ready’

VisitScotland explores tourism potential for the emerging market.

Scottish tourism businesses will learn how to position Scotland as an ‘India Ready’ destination through a series of industry-led activities by the national tourism organisation.

VisitScotland representatives will meet with key tour operators, leading tourism industry figures and strategic partners at a roundtable event in Mumbai this month.

The forum has been organised by the tourism body and forms part of a five-day India Business Development Mission in partnership with Etihad Airways, taking in Mumbai, Chandigarh and Delhi.

VisitScotland will be joined in India by seven industry partners for a series of trade and networking events across the country.

An India market seminar is also planned for VisitScotland Expo, Scotland’s premier business to business travel trade event, held on 20 and 21 April in Edinburgh.

All events are set to explore and promote the potential and importance of this key emerging market to Scottish tourism businesses in a bid to get them ‘India Ready’.

Scotland’s appeal within India lies in its dramatic landscapes and natural beauty, its cities, whisky and golf. Film tourism is another key driver, with around 24 Bollywood movies having been filmed in Scotland and whose locations are featured a special online map, Bollywood Scotland, produced by VisitScotland last year.

India is the 14th largest international market for expenditure in Scotland and the ninth for number of nights, according to the latest international passenger figures.

In 2014, Indian visitors spent 474,000 nights in Scotland while over the past three years a third of all trips by visitors were for the purpose of a holiday and each spent an average of 19.1 nights per trip. Edinburgh is the third most visited city in the UK for Indian visitors, with Glasgow and Inverness also top destinations.

Tourism Minister Fergus Ewing said: “Scotland’s tourism offer is unrivalled. Visitors come here to enjoy our amazing natural scenery, our history and culture, and the multitude of tourism attractions and quality experiences, and to spend in our hotels, shops and restaurants. Home to a host of world class events, including the Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design, Scotland has something to offer everyone across the generations.

“Scotland has already been the backdrop to a number of successful Bollywood films over the years, and we would welcome the opportunity for more Indian tourists to visit the tremendous locations used. However, we must never become complacent and trade and networking events such as this to develop emerging markets should pay dividends in the future.”

Malcolm Roughead, Chief Executive of VisitScotland, said: “Our beautiful landscapes, bustling cities, iconic whisky and world-beating golf courses are a potent mix for the Indian market. As the world’s 23rd most valuable source market for international tourism, with 13.6 million outbound visits, there is enormous tourism potential for India, and Scotland must ensure it is ready to capitalise.

“We are working with a number of partners to promote Scotland’s awe-inspiring landscapes and unique cultural heritage in India and these events will help get tourism businesses ‘India Ready’ so they can be better informed to explore this emerging market.”

VisitScotland launched its first ever global campaign and social movement – the Spirit of Scotland on 10 February 2016. The campaign is built on extensive research which shows that people think Scotland has a unique spirit – whether it’s the magic of the landscapes or the warmth of the people. Everyone who has shared their #ScotSpirit will become part of a special social movement.

Vicky Karantzavelou
Co-Founder & Chief Editor - TravelDailyNews Media Network | Website

Vicky is the co-founder of TravelDailyNews Media Network where she is the Editor-in Chief. She is also responsible for the daily operation and the financial policy. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Tourism Business Administration from the Technical University of Athens and a Master in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Wales.

She has many years of both academic and industrial experience within the travel industry. She has written/edited numerous articles in various tourism magazines.