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Why do we have a strategy? Why should you get involved?

Why do we have a strategy? Why should you get involved?

Stephen leckie

Tourism Scotland 2020 is a strategy for the industry, by the industry. Working together, we can make Scotland a destination of choice offering a high quality, value for money and memorable customer experience, delivered by skilled and passionate people.

???Upping our game will bring benefits for businesses, destinations and the industry as a whole, but we need to act now! I???d urge everybody to get on board and help drive Scottish tourism forward as we embrace the challenges of the future.??? 

Stephen Leckie, Chair, Tourism Leadership Group and Scottish Tourism Alliance

beautiful scottish sunset over a pier

Caroline Warburton, the National Strategy Delivery Co-ordinator for the Scottish Tourism Alliance, highlights how we can grow our businesses by working in partnership to implement the Tourism Scotland 2020 strategy.

2020 logo

Who is involved in the Tourism Scotland 2020 Strategy?

The strategy is being driven by the Tourism Leadership Group, co-ordinated by the Scottish Tourism Alliance. The Tourism Leadership Group comprises leaders of some of Scotland’s most influential tourism businesses and representatives of key tourism agencies.

Why Is It Important for Scotland?

Not only does tourism generate some ??4.5bn p/a for the Scottish economy (excluding day visits), but it also supports around 185,000 jobs across just over 13,000 tourism-related businesses and helps to sustain jobs in many other industries too.

Despite some encouraging improvements in recent visitor spend and numbers, the long term performance of Scottish tourism has been modest. If trends in overnight visitor spend over the last forty years were to continue, we would see little or no real growth in the coming decade. Therefore we need to make changes now.

By taking the steps outlined in the Tourism Scotland 2020 strategy, we could increase our annual visitor spend by some £1bn per annum, making a real difference to the sustainability of the industry and individual businesses.

By taking the steps in the Tourism Scotland 2020 strategy, we could increase our annual visitor spend by 1bn per annum.

How Are We Moving Forward?

The Scottish Tourism Alliance is working with tourism groups in the different sectors that have been identified as offering particular growth potential. We are developing collaborative action plans that will help to deliver our ambitious growth targets. A number of national projects are already being rolled out in sectors such as Business Tourism and Heritage Tourism.


Over the coming months, these action plans will be finalised and promoted to businesses across the country to help them identify market opportunities to increase their profitability and contribute to tourism growth at both local and national level.

Which of the areas within the strategy are important to your business?  Have you taken the time to consider where your business fits?  Do you work with your local tourism partnership?

2015 rocket image depicting tourism strategy

To be successful, we need to turn our tourism strengths into quality and authentic experiences that match our visitors??? interests

We need to highlight the aspects of our visitor experience that are uniquely Scottish and can???t easily be replicated by our competitors.

Just as importantly, we need to ensure a first class experience at every step on the customer journey. This means building our individual and collective expertise in leadership and collaboration, sustainable tourism, quality and skills, and marketing.

With these building blocks in place, we???ll be well placed to achieve our ambitious growth aspirations.

By asking visitors what attracts them to Scotland, we???ve identified four particular strengths that we can use to our advantage.

Our Key Strengths

  • Heritage, nature and activities - Our dramatic scenery, rich history and culture, and our wealth of outdoor activities provide a fantastic range of things for visitors to see and do.

  • Business tourism - World-class, purpose built conference centres and intimate, exclusive-use venues give Scotland a strong reputation as a place to do business.

  • Destination towns and cities – Our famous cities and renowned destination towns like St Andrews, Pitlochry and Oban are great bases for touring or short break visitors.

  • Events and festivals – International events like Edinburgh’s Festivals and smaller, community initiatives across the country showcase our unique culture and traditions to visitors from around the world.

  • The Tourism Scotland 2020 strategy focuses on how we can work in partnership to use these strengths and develop authentic experiences that will appeal to our target markets.


    Why do we have a strategy? Why should you get involved?