An ageing population at home and overseas presents a golden opportunity for Scotland’s tourism businesses.

With higher levels of average spend, a tendency for repeat visits and loyalty to a country, destination or business, older visitors from the UK and the rest of Europe are a growing market.

Whilst catering for senior travellers has many benefits, meeting the needs of people with dementia, additional caring requirements or mobility issues, for example, takes initiative and innovative thinking.

Dr Fiona Hutchison, Sector Engagement Executive for Tourism at Interface, said:

“At Interface we work with our industry partners to spot future trends and enable businesses and destinations to develop new products, services and processes, matching them with the right expertise in universities and research institutions to do so.

“Harnessing world-class academic expertise from Scottish universities and research institutions could benefit not only senior customers, but tourism business, the industry and wider economy of Scotland.

“Our upcoming event aims to introduce the tourism industry to insights, potential partners and resources to complement their plans and develop their products for this growth market. We’ll hear from experts in health and social care, inclusive design and assistive technology, to name a few aspects. Our programme includes examples of businesses who are proactive in inclusive tourism and can share their experiences of teaming up with Scotland’s universities.”

Chris McCoy MBE, Equality Diversity Manager and Head of the Accessible Tourism Programme at Visit Scotland, will set the scene at the event.

Chris explained:

“VisitScotland, within our Inclusive Tourism programme, are keen to ensure that the tourism industry understands the business potential of the ‘Grey Pound’ which accounts for almost 50% of consumer spending. The over 50s account for some 76 per cent of the UK’s financial wealth. £1 in every £2 spent in the UK is spent by someone over the age of fifty.  Their confidence in the future has made them willing to lift their spending faster than other age groups and, in doing so they have helped drive the UK out of recession.”


Register for our free event - Tourism Innovations for an Ageing Population - 9th May, Edinburgh