Business tourism in Aberdeen

Find valuable insights and business opportunities for Aberdeen tourism businesses in this report by Ideas in Partnership.

Tourism is a leading industry in Aberdeen, reported to generate a massive £550 million each year.

Aberdeen’s striking coastal location and rich cultural heritage attract vast numbers of visitors to the area. Tourism is still growing and Aberdeen has been placed within the top 20 cities to visit in the UK.

Recently, local hotels have recorded some of the highest occupancy levels in the country and demand is close to outstripping supply.

The majority of tourism revenue comes from business visitors. They spend 2.5 times that of holiday-makers, so it is very important that local businesses understand who they are and what they want.

The big picture

  • Business tourism is a substantial market in Aberdeen
  • By placing a high demand on local accommodation, it has impacted the leisure market
  • Business visitors could be encouraged to extend their trips into holidays, but currently they are not aware of available options

Opportunities for businesses

  • Local hotels could offer promotional visits to businesses to showcase their services
  • Serviced accommodation providers can promote long stay business visits and relocation deals
  • Aberdeen is world-renowned for its quality food and drink – restaurants should promote use of local produce
  • Railway, airport and conference facility access is important for business visitors, so hotels could offer their own shuttle service
  • By promoting activities in a number of forms, businesses will reach a wider market, e.g. posters, air and rail magazines and online
  • Short break packages will encourage business visitors to extend their stay or come back with friends and family
  • Leisure activities also appeal to businesses travellers – they can be targeted at hotels and travel hubs
  • Accommodation providers could advertise reduced rates over quiet weekends
  • Aberdeenshire businesses could use their lower accommodation prices as hook
  • Local companies can support the Aberdeen City and Shire brand by promoting their Portal - a ‘one stop shop’ for everything in the area

Things you should know

  • Booking needs to be easy and convenient during business hours via phone and internet
  • Some key factors when deciding on a business accommodation booking are value, parking, DB&B rates, and a good knowledge of the local area. If these are offered, they should be clearly marketed

If you remember one thing

With business travel being such a key market in Aberdeen, it’s important to cater to the specific needs of business visitors and provide a range of information which will add value to their stay.

Source - ‘Joint Synopsis on Aberdeen Business Visitor Survey and Aberdeen Business Community Tourism Study’ by Ideas in Partnership for Scottish Enterprise Grampian, August 2008