The Current State Of Tours & Activities


DigiTourShow #204

Chris Torres

Chris Torres

26 Feb 2019

Peter Syme was joined by Alex Bainbridge of Autoura and Chris Torres (TMA’s founder). Peter has been involved in the adventure tours sector for 34 years — ever since he started working as a tour guide as a teenager. Peter owns several different adventure tour businesses, including 1000 Mile Journeys and Splash White Water Rafting

Peter is an outspoken commentator on the tours and activities industry, and he has made a few splashes of his own when he has spoken at various industry events, such as the recent Arival convention in Las Vegas.

In last night’s discussion, Peter focused the discussion on Scotland, making sure to offer plenty of insight and value for anyone running a tourism business in Scotland. Peter discussed the current state of Scotland’s tours and activities industry, and he explained how it is likely to change over the next few years. We can expect huge influxes of visitors from the ever-growing middleclass in China, and we need to make sure that Scotland is ready to make the most of this opportunity.

Peter explained that Scotland’s tourism industry has higher service ratings than any other country — and this is a figure that all Scottish tours and activities companies should be proud of. However, Peter also explained that while Scotland is great at tours & activities, it is not great at the technological side of the industry — especially in relation to digital marketing.

Too many Scottish tourism business have poorly performing websites and they often fail to take full advantage of Facebook advertising, PPC, and search engine optimisation. While online travel agents (OTAs) are a great way to access potential customers, they can’t be only way to bring in business — otherwise, a change to an algorithm could cause you to drop down an OTA’s rankings, losing all of your incoming bookings.

Peter had a lot more to say, and Alex Bainbridge also contributed a lot to the discussion

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