The event aims to attract those who come into contact with visitors on a day to day basis, from taxi drivers and tour guides, to concierges and front of house staff in bars, restaurants, shops and attractions, as well as marketing and business development staff from hotels, tour organisers and transport providers.
A new ‘winter’ focussed ETAG Business Opportunity Guide will also be launched at the Showcase which will have lots of information, case studies and top tips to help businesses maximise the opportunities that the winter season can offer http://www.etag.org.uk/business-opportunities.asp.
Businesses will also have the opportunity to sign up for a new Winter Product Innovation Workshops which will help them think about how they can innovate around their winter offer, and partner with others.
One of the key objectives of the Edinburgh2020 Tourism Strategy is to reduce seasonality across the sector. The target is to achieve 50 per cent of the projected additional visits during the months of October to March. The winter-focused Tourism Showcase is an element of the implementation plan that has been developed specifically to help achieve this objective.
Robin Worsnop, Chair of the Edinburgh Tourism Action Group, said “Edinburgh has an amazing tourism offer throughout the year. The range and scale of what’s available is a challenge in itself, as it is difficult for the industry to keep up to date with what’s going on. We have created the Tourism Showcase to cover the whole tourism offering, but it will focus particularly on the winter months when Edinburgh offers a very different experience for visitors.
“Filling the spare capacity in Edinburgh over the winter months is a high priority. The under-use of accommodation is also reflected in other sectors of tourism, particularly in restaurants, attractions, air and rail capacity; but also in arts and entertainment venues. The Showcase will help businesses identify opportunities to collaborate and create new winter offers which attract additional visitors, and at the same time enable tourism operators to more effectively exploit the wide range of activities, events and performances and attractions that are already in place across the city over the winter period.”
Up to 50 exhibitors will be promoting their winter offers including attractions such as Mary King’s Close and Mercat Tours, Festivals including the Scottish International Storytelling Festival, and 'Previously...' Scotland's History Festival, Performing Arts and Theatre venues promoting their programmes which this winter includes showstoppers like The Lion King, War Horse and of course the Festive Pantomimes, as well National Museums Scotland with its new spring 2014 blockbuster exhibition ‘Mammoths of the Ice Age’.