VisitScotland welcomes massive rise in overseas visitors

Overseas visitors are playing a massive part in the Scottish economy, according to new figures from the UK Office of National Statistics.
The quarterly International Passenger Survey (IPS) tourism statistics for April to June and the domestic tourism statistics derived from the Great Britain Tourism Survey shows the number of international visitors from January to June increased by 14 per cent, while their spending went up by 35 per cent, compared to the previous year.

The April to June period this year showed an increase of 21.6 per cent from overseas, with their spending up by 41.8 per cent.

Visits to Scotland have increased from overseas, for the first six months of 2017 (Picture: George Hiles/Unsplash)

VisitScotland chief executive Malcolm Roughead said: ‘It is magnificent to see such spectacular growth from international markets in what has been a busy year for tourism in Scotland.
‘Across the board from accommodation provider to CalMac Ferries to Edinburgh and Glasgow airports, we have heard from many who have had a record-breaking year.
‘Such major growth from our international markets can be attributed to increased, targeted marketing activity in key North American and European countries, favourable exchange rates, increased capacity on flights and the Outlander effect which has taken the country by storm since the release of the popular TV series.

VisitScotland chief executive Malcolm Roughead (Picture: VisitScotland)

‘Domestically, the day trip and holiday market is booming in Scotland with a rise in visitors by 9.3 per cent and 4.6 per cent respectively in the first six months of the year and this is also reflected by the significant rise in Historic Environment Scotland attractions reported last week which is great to see during the Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology.
‘Of course with great numbers comes great responsibility, and it is imperative the country’s tourism industry remains sustainable.
“This includes looking at how we can share the tourism windfall with lesser known parts of Scotland and outside of peak season, alongside ensuring that infrastructure meets current and future demand.
‘VisitScotland is committed to working in partnership with the government, businesses and communities so that Scotland remains a must-visit destination for future generations of holidaymakers.
‘Tourism is more than a holiday experience, it is integral to sustaining communities across Scotland by generating income, creating jobs and stimulating social change.’