As the peak visitor season approaches, two of the country’s leading tourism and transport organisations have joined in a unique nationwide ticketing selling initiative.
The Scotland-wide network of 84 VisitScotland Information Centres (VICs), which welcome around 3.5 million visitors per year, will for the first time sell ferry tickets and book vehicles on all of Caledonian MacBrayne’s (CalMac) award winning sailings.
The ticketing agreement is the latest partnership between VisitScotland and the ferry operator, which provided 10,000 free ferry tickets in support of VisitScotland’s sell-out “Big April Adventures” promotion which has formed a key part of the Year of Natural Scotland 2013.
Cathy Craig, Head of Marketing and eCommerce at CalMac, said: “This agreement with VisitScotland, is one of many initiatives we are working on to improve our visitor experience. It means anyone can buy a ticket and book a ferry at whichever VIC they happen to be in, instead of having to plan ahead and buy tickets online or wait until they had arrived at one of our ports.
“In addition to allowing visitors in any part of Scotland, , with little or no notice, to plan a ferry trip, it also allows us to target visitors who have no firm plans or itinerary and who might choose to take a ferry trip on an impulse or as the result of a recommendation from another visitor.”
Mike Cantlay, Chairman of VisitScotland, said: “One of the driving parts of the visitor experience is ease of access, so I’m delighted that CalMac has enabled us take bookings and sell tickets on their behalf. It is also represents a fantastic step forward as we continue to celebrate the Year of Natural Scotland, for which Scotland’s islands are a key focus. We want to get as many people out to our magnificent island’s this year and by having this new agreement in place, it gives us the chance to inspire even more visitors to get out there and experience them.”
The Year of Natural Scotland 2013 provides visitors with the ideal opportunity to become immersed in all things Scottish, from the rugged scenery of the Highlands and the splendour of the national parks, to the freshness of the natural larders and the warm welcome from people who passionately care about this wild land.
Notes to Editors
1. Further information about Caledonian MacBrayne is available at http://www.calmac.co.uk/
2. Caledonian MacBrayne and CalMac are trading names of CalMac Ferries Ltd (CFL). These names are used under licence from Caledonian Maritime Assets Limited (CMAL). The lion rampant device is used by CFL with the permission of CMAL.
3. In 2012, CalMac carried 4.5m passengers and 1m cars on 25 routes across the West coast of Scotland.
4. VisitScotland is Scotland’s national tourism organisation. Its core purpose is to maximise the economic benefit of tourism to Scotland. Follow us on twitter: @visitscotnews
5. 2013 is the Year of Natural Scotland, inspiring our people and our visitors to celebrate Scotland’s outstanding natural beauty, landscapes and biodiversity as Scotland prepares to welcome the world in 2014 and beyond.
6. The VisitScotland Information Centre network is a unique face to face channel engaging with around five million visitors and locals each year. Everyone who uses a VisitScotland Information Centre goes on to spend an additional £5.35, generating over £24million for Scotland’s economy.
For further information please contact:
Group Public Affairs Manager
David MacBrayne Ltd (On behalf of CalMac Ferries Ltd)
Tel: 01475 650371
Kate Turnbull / James Fox
Corporate Press Manager / Corporate Press Officer
Tel: 0131 472 2052 / 472 2324
Notes to Editors:
- Follow us on twitter: @visitscotnews
- VisitScotland is Scotland’s national tourism organisation. Its core purpose is to maximise the economic benefit of tourism to Scotland.
- The organisation has three key roles:
- To market Scotland to all parts of the world to attract visitors
- To provide information – and inspiration – to visitors and potential visitors so they get the best out of a visit to Scotland
- To provide quality assurance to visitors and quality advice to the industry and partners to help the industry meet and strive to exceed customer expectations
- VisitScotland works together with tourism businesses to make tourism a success for everyone and ensure the industry continues to grow.
- The organisation employs 700 people and has offices and VisitScotland Information Centres across Scotland.
- 2014 is the year Scotland welcomes the world, when it hosts the Glasgow Commonwealth Games, the Ryder Cup at Gleneagles and more than 800 Homecoming events throughout the country.For more information on Homecoming Scotland 2014, go to www.visitscotland.com
- The VisitScotland Information Centre network is a unique face-to-face channel engaging with around five million visitors and locals each year. Everyone who uses a VisitScotland Information Centre goes on to spend an additional £5.35, generating over £24 million for Scotland’s economy.
- According to a recent Deloitte study, tourism employs 270,000 people in Scotland in 20,000 diverse businesses. The same study calculates that the industry contributes £11 billion annually (direct and indirect impact, including day visits) and supports around 10 per cent of employment in Scotland. Almost 16 million tourists take overnight trips to Scotland.
- For VisitScotland’s press releases go to http://www.visitscotland.org/media_centre.aspx, tourism statistics and frequently asked questions go to http://www.visitscotland.org/
- Where possible, a Gaelic speaker will be made available for broadcast interviews on request (Far an tèid iarraidh, agus far am bheil sin nar comas, bruidhinnidh neach le Gàidhlig aig agallamh)
- For holiday information on Scotland go to www.visitscotland.com
- For information about business tourism in Scotland go to www.conventionscotland.com
- For more information on VisitScotland’s annual review please go to www.visitscotland.org/about_us/our_focus/annual_report.aspx