I think it’s fair to describe a 36% increase to £317 million as ‘massive’.
From the Scottish Business New Network, yesterday:
‘Visits and spending by international tourists in Glasgow rose to its highest level on record in 2017. The Travel Trends 2017 data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed the number of international visitors travelling to Scotland’s largest city rose by nearly a fifth (19%) to 787,000, while expenditure increased by more than a third (36%) to £319m. Glasgow’s growth outperformed the Scottish average – at a national level visits were up 17% to 3.2 million while spend rose 23% to £2.3 billion.’
Increased tourism in Glasgow and across Scotland has featured regularly here, including these recent examples:
Strangely, in the light of the above, the Bank of Scotland survey, reported by BBC Scotland, yesterday, noted:
‘Tourism fell flat in the quarter, but a net third of companies said they were expecting growth during the remainder of 2018.’
This highlights, I think, the dangers of reporting single surveys as news, especially negative ones of the kind our Yoon media love so much, without providing some recent historical context from other surveys to give a more reliable, dare I say, balanced picture.
While I’m sure perceptions of terrorist threat in Europe’s mainland cities will have been a factor in drawing tourists north to Scotland, I wonder if Glasgow’s transformation from, statistically, one of the most violent cities in Europe to one of the safest, in the last ten years, has been another. See this from the Guardian’s Complete University Guide in January 2018:
These are quite remarkable differences with the risk of violence in Scottish cities significantly lower than in all the other UK cities. Glasgow has a far lower rate of violence against the person than even the least violent of the English cities, Bath, Chichester and Winchester