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Festival season boosts Scottish economy

Edinburgh hosts six festivals attracting 290,000 domestic visitors

Date : 12/08/2015

As Edinburgh’s festival season gets into full swing, the number of domestic visitors to the capital is forecast to increase by two thirds. Latest statistics reveal a boost of 104,000 visitors to 290,000 in August compared to 186,000 in July this year.

Together with 174,000 international visitors flocking to Edinburgh and the Lothians, the increase in tourism will contribute £136 million to the economy.

Edinburgh Festivals collectively have become a world-leading cultural brand consisting of twelve festivals throughout the year, attracting 4.2 million visitors contributing £261 million to the Scottish economy.

August is the busiest month for Edinburgh with over 25,000 entertainers, artists and performers creating over 1,000 shows per day throughout the month. Edinburgh will host six festivals including the Edinburgh International Festival, Edinburgh International Festival Fringe, Edinburgh International Book Festival, Edinburgh Mela, Edinburgh Art Festival and The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo.

Malcolm Roughead OBE, Chief Executive of VisitScotland said: “The Scottish capital comes alive in August which is why, time and time again, visitors flock to the city in their thousands, boosting the local and national economy. Tourism is the heartbeat of the Scottish economy, supporting communities and creating jobs, and Edinburgh’s Festivals are a major part of that. Edinburgh’s international reputation as a festival city, with a range of dynamic festivals presenting ground breaking programmes continues to inspire visitors from across the UK. From the Tattoo to the International Festival to Edinburgh’s Hogmanay, there is something to suit to all tastes, all year round.”


Events and festivals have become a priority for attracting tourism, offering a fantastic marketing opportunity to attract more visitors and encourage them to spend more and stay longer. It is the perfect time for tourism businesses to get involved with cultural events and experiences, find out more by reading our Events, Festivals & Cultural Tourism in Scotland guide.