Major Tourism Survey Shows Visitors Very Satisfied with West Dunbartonshire
The biggest-ever survey of tourism in West Dunbartonshire shows that 88% of visitors to the area are very satisfied with their experience.
The majority of visitors come from Glasgow and Renfrewshire, with the most common source of tourists from elsewhere in the UK being the North West of England and London. There is a wide spread of overseas visitors with the USA as the single biggest market.
Word of mouth from friends and relatives was by far the biggest factor in selling the area as a visitor attraction, although the internet was also significant.
Of the 673 tourists who were interviewed in June and August 2013 more than half were on a day trip to the area, while nearly a fifth on holiday for four nights or more. Nearly a third had visited West Dunbartonshire for leisure purposes more than ten times in their life.
The stunning scenery on offer was the factor tourists most enjoyed about their visit, and Loch Lomond, Lomond Shores, Cameron House and Dumbarton Castle were the area’s most well known attractions.
An impressive 97% would recommend West Dunbartonshire as a visitor location to their friends and family.
It was also encouraging to see that last summer’s tourism campaign, the biggest in the Council’s history, contributed to nearly a quarter of all visitors saying they had seen advertising for West Dunbartonshire.
In terms of improving the tourism experience visitors called for better signage and less congestion on the roads.
The Council also tested the views of potential visitors by conducting 300 interviews with the public in Bearsden and Milngavie, Glasgow’s city centre and West End, Anniesland, Baillieston, East Kilbride. Of these more than half said they had made a leisure visit to West Dunbartonshire in the past year, and many suggested the Clyde Shopping Centre as another well known attraction.
Of those that hadn’t visited the vast majority most associated West Dunbartonshire with good scenery and easy access. Negatively nearly a fifth of non-visitors thought the area was little known.
Councillor David McBride, Convener of Economic Development, said: “For us to be able to grow and support tourism in West Dunbartonshire we need to have a good understanding of the local tourism offerings. I’m delighted that this important research has been undertaken to identify the key markets and what attracts people to visit this area. We now need to capitalise on this information to encourage more tourists to visit West Dunbartonshire.
“This area has so many great attractions and we need to continue to promote them throughout the Strathclyde area and beyond.”
Vice Convener Lawrence O’Neill added: “Tourism is a key sector for this area and it is brilliant to see that so many people enjoy their visit to West Dunbartonshire, and would recommend it to friends and family. This is a big year with the 2014 Commonwealth Games and Ryder Cup in Scotland and we need to use this information, and share it with local businesses, so we can make the most of our visitors and the tourism sector they support.”