Relocated VisitScotland information service sees 55% increase in visitor enquiries
Since moving into Caithness Horizons at the end of March 2013, the Thurso VIC has been able to increase opening hours and change from a seasonal to all year service, making it easier for visitors to access local information when arriving in Thurso.
The numbers of visitors coming in to source local information has risen from 11,917 to 18,473 since the move, when compared to the same period in 2012/13.
Building on the established relationships with cruise liners visiting the port, VIC staff continue to visit most ships to provide those on board with information on what to see and do locally. In the past 12 months, the VIC staff have welcomed 6 cruise liners with a further 7 ships expected this summer.
Scott Armstrong, VisitScotland Regional Director, said:
“VisitScotland, in partnership with Caithness Horizons, is really seeing the benefits of partnership working to improve the visitor information provision in Thurso. We are thrilled to have welcomed almost 18,500 visitors to the Thurso VIC in the past 12 months, giving us the opportunity to inspire and influence them to do and see more across the region.”
Paul Cariss, Chairman of Caithness Horizons, went on to add:
“We are delighted to be working in this partnership agreement with VisitScotland. Both parties are benefiting from the VisitScotland Information Centre being located at Caithness Horizons and are working together to develop and promote tourism in the far north.
“We welcome visitors through our doors from all over the world. This year they will experience a wide range of planned events and activities and we look forward to another long and busy season working together.”
Councillor Deirdre Mackay, leader of The Highland Council’s Caithness and Sutherland Area, welcomed the success of the new VIC in Thurso:
“The increase in visitors clearly shows that this partnership approach is working well and is a good model the council is keen to see rolled out to other areas across the Highlands.
“Instead of the previous seasonal service for visitors, they can now benefit from a year-round service to ensure they make the most of their visit to the north whenever they choose to come. It also has given a super local attraction a real boost by encouraging more people through its doors. I’m sure the coming season will prove to be even busier.”