Scottish tourism businesses have another opportunity to link up with global tour operators and travel agents “virtually”.
Recognising the need for Scotland’s tourism businesses to maintain contact throughout Covid-time with travel intermediaries around the globe, VisitScotland has organised the Scotland Reconnect 2021 event, which will take place April 27-29, following a highly-successful inaugural digital event last November.
Last year’s Scotland Reconnect was the first time the national tourism organisation had delivered a virtual trade event on this scale.
Feedback was that this had been hugely successful, with several hundred Scottish tourism businesses from across the country taking part in some 5,000 meetings with international travel trade from 23 countries, aimed at creating tour packages for future visitors.
USA, Canada, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, Scandinavia, Australia and Brazil were all represented at the event, with London-based inbound operators representing the Japanese and Chinese markets.
Malcolm Roughead, Chief Executive of VisitScotland, said:
“We are delighted to offer our tourism businesses the chance to plan for the future again with international markets, during the most difficult period they continue to face.
“Until we can run face-to-face business events, platforms like Scotland Reconnect are the next best thing.
“We hope it gives the industry confidence that engaging online can deliver for their businesses.
“We always knew that demand for Scotland has not diminished during the pandemic but this confirms what our intelligence has been telling us, the recovery will take time but we are as popular as ever as a destination.
“Engaging virtually serves two key functions, keeping Scotland at the forefront of people’s minds when international travel is permitted; and the potential for businesses to generate future bookings and create new revenue streams from digital experiences.
“We look forward to what we are confident will be another highly successful event.”
Nick Landy, Supplier Relationship Manager at North American-based tour operator Brendan Vacations, said:
“Scotland Reconnect has been a huge success for us at Brendan Vacations.
“The OnAir platform has facilitated an experience which has felt similar to a face to face event.
“The networking, storytelling sessions, music, and ‘In conversation with’ sessions have all enriched the event and helped us reconnect as an industry.
“We will be doing our bit to drive the message out there that Scotland is ready to welcome our guests back.”