THE Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games will offer an “unprecedented opportunity” for tourism, attracting thousands of new visitors to the city and Scotland, Games officials said.
A fifth (20 per cent) of people who have tickets for the Games have never visited Glasgow, while more than half (54 per cent) know little or nothing about the city, a new study conducted by Glasgow 2014 found.
However many plan to stay a few nights in the city, with nearly half (46 per cent) planning a short break of two to four nights and almost one in three (28 per cent) intending to stay five nights or more.
One in 10 intend to combine their visit to Glasgow with a longer trip to Scotland to explore other parts of the country.
The study of almost 10,000 spectators asked them about their travel, accommodation and visitor plans.
‘On world stage like never before’
Mike Cantlay, chairman of VisitScotland, said: “The Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games offers an unprecedented opportunity for tourism. It is Glasgow and Scotland’s chance to shine on the world stage like never before.
“We look forward to helping spectators make the most of their time in Glasgow and further afield, offering them advice and information on all the fascinating things to see and do during their time here.
“It’s great to see that so many visitors are also taking the time to explore other parts of the country too. From the rich history of Edinburgh and Stirling to the breath-taking beauty of the Highlands and Islands, Scotland has something to suit all tastes.”
The study found the vast majority of spectators will be attending from outside Glasgow, with less than a third (30 per cent) of ticket holders using their home as a base from which to attend the Games.
Nine in 10 visitors will research their itinerary before the Games, the study found.
For those planning to combine their trip to the sporting event with visiting other parts of Scotland, Edinburgh is the top attraction, with 40 per cent saying they are considering or intending to visit the city.
Almost a third (31 per cent) said they would travel north to the Highlands and the Isle of Skye, whilst a quarter (25 per cent) preferred to stay closer to Glasgow travelling to Stirling, Loch Lomond and The Trossachs.
David Grevemberg, Glasgow 2014 chief executive, said: “The Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games is the biggest sporting and cultural event ever to come to Scotland and will put the city and the country on the world stage.
“Our survey demonstrates the potential benefits for tourism, not only in Glasgow but across Scotland, with many visitors indicating a desire to extend their stay beyond the Games.
“By working together to ensure we can deliver an outstanding Games experience for everyone to enjoy, we can secure lasting benefits for Glasgow and Scotland.”