VisitScotland Unveils New Trade Activity Program

VisitScotland is launching a new platform to enable Scottish tourism businesses to showcase their product to international buyers regardless of the challenges of COVID-19. “Discover Scotland 2022” is a new event series, comprising an online business-to-business event with five regional showcases. “Discover Scotland: Reconnect 2022 will take place virtually from April 5 to April 7, 2022. The five regional showcases, known as “Discover Scotland: Live Showcase,” will then be held in May and September 2022. 

The new event replaces the longstanding annual “VisitScotland Expo” with a new format designed to mitigate the challenges of the pandemic, build on the success of “Scotland Reconnect 20/21” and welcome international buyers back to Scotland with regional showcases.

“Discover Scotland 2022” will also showcase new and existing sustainable tourism products directly to key international and U.K. buyers. As part of Tourism Declares, the national tourism organization made a public declaration to play a leading role in the development of Scotland as a globally recognized responsible destination. Since then, VisitScotland has been working with the Scottish tourism and events industry to create a “long-lasting sustainable tourism destination, which will protect the natural and cultural environment and benefit visitors and residents alike.”

The event allows VisitScotland to facilitate a “cost-effective option” for participating businesses and operators to connect, plan ahead and do business online and in person with buyers—and potentially explore Scotland’s regional responsible tourism offering. 

In a press release, Malcolm Roughead, VisitScotland’s chief executive said, “The challenges of the pandemic have given us the opportunity to reconsider the way we deliver events; Discover Scotland has been designed to meet the needs of the tourism industry in 2022 and ensure that connecting with buyers remains possible through a new program of activity.” 

“Scotland Reconnect” was held virtually in November 2020 and was successfully repeated in April 2021 as an alternative to live events during the pandemic. More than 7,000 pre-arranged business meetings took place over the three days in April. In April 2022, VisitScotland anticipates virtual attendance from around 300 buyers from more than 20 markets and attendance of 300 Scottish suppliers.

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