April 18, 2018

Kirsten Spence, Senior Market Manager – Emerging Markets, VisitScotland on her visit to India, spoke in a interview with on the side-lines of their Roadshow in Bangalore.

How has the Indian growth story evolved?

Over the last three years, the average in terms of growth from the Indian market has been a 37% growth. Now, with enhanced connectivity in form of Etihad Airways flying into Edinburgh in addition to their existing two Flights a day from Glasgow and Turkish Airlines adding flights, it has made getting in to Scotland more accessible. We have seen more of the traffic has been from the leisure rather than VFR, which are sure signs of growth. For last year we have seen year on year growth of 8% from the year.

The expectation is that the traffic would again increase. I think the work that we have done having visited India in January and December in 2017 we will start to see in the development of different products for next year and the year beyond.

How has been the response towards new visitor trends into Scotland?

Visit Scotland has been in India over the last five years have seen a progressive difference in the type of travel products that the people have been asking us for, initially it was all classic Scotland coming into Edinburgh, but now it has been a lot of touring outside of Edinburgh and Glasgow. We will focus on high-end and luxury travel. Scotland offers unique experiences such as staying in castles deep-rooted in unparalleled history. Food and drink in Scotland is getting popular with guests looking for niche food trails such as on cheese, Chocolate and Whisky.

Marketing Plans for India?

In addition to partnering with Etihad Airways for B2B trade activation events, we are also looking at celebrating the 20th anniversary of the film “Kuch Hota Hai” being filmed in Scotland. We have even developed a Trip planner which shows film locations around Scotland. From the B2B perspective, travel agents can use that to help plan itineraries for those inclined towards films.

New Destinations for the Indian market?

We found the Indian market now engages very well what we call the Golden Triangle which is Edinburgh, Glasgow and Inverness. Unique products such as the East Coast of Aberdeen, Lakes in St. Andrews and Dundee coastline is getting popular. We would like to focus on the Scottish Borders, East Coast of Scotland and Dumfries and Galloway.

Stay Patterns

The Indian travellers on an average tend to stay between three to four nights, mostly in Edinburgh and do day trips to Glasgow and Inverness.

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