VisitAberdeenshire Update - 8 November

VisitAberdeenshire’s core purpose is to drive demand to visit Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire, and to support businesses to grow and to meet that demand. In this newsletter we turn our attention to the second part of that equation as our annual – free - tourism development programme for local businesses gathers momentum, including the launch of the sixth Game Changer course. Together, we are building a desirable, sustainable destination that will attract more visitors, who will stay longer, spend more, explore deeper and come back again another day.


Chris Foy



Game Changer for Tourism Businesses 2024 – Applications open!


Applications are currently open for the sixth Game Changer for Tourism Businesses Programme. Developed and offered in partnership by VisitAberdeenshire and Opportunity North East, the programme can help you to identify your target markets, define consumer and market demands and refine your offering to provide the experiences and services that visitors are looking for.

The programme is suitable for senior managers with authority to implement change and owners of SMEs and larger tourism businesses in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire.

With only 12 spaces available, applications are open until 5pm Thursday 23 November.

For more information and to apply, click here.



Tourism Development Programme


We have had a brilliant start to our 2023/24 Tourism Development Programme. So far, we have covered topics such as Destination Marketing, Food Waste Reduction, The Benefits of Inclusive Tourism, Travel Trade and Package Travel and Linked Travel Arrangements Regulations. Below, you will find a selection of events coming up over the next six weeks with many more in the New Year still to be announced.

Climate Change and Tourism: Getting Started on your Journey to Net Zero

Tuesday 21 November

3pm – 4:30pm


Click here to register

Travel Trade Masterclass *Limited spaces remaining*

Thursday 23 November

9am – 3pm

Thainstone House Hotel

Click here to register


Digital Marketing Masterclass with Stephen Whitelaw *Limited spaces remaining*

Tuesday 28 November

9am – 1pm followed by 1to1s

The Aberdeen Altens Hotel

Click here to register

VisitAberdeenshire Presents… Dementia inclusive tourism

Wednesday 29 November

2pm – 2:45pm


Click here to register

VisitAberdeenshire Presents… An Insights update and how you can get involved

Tuesday 5 December

10am – 10:45am

Click here to register




Ellon area local networking meeting

You are invited to join us for a local networking meeting for Ellon and the surrounding areas. You will hear an update on our activity and how to get the most out of working with VisitAberdeenshire, and there will also be time to network with fellow tourism and hospitality businesses.


Thursday 16 November

4pm – 6:30pm

Newburgh Inn

Click here to register



Boost your local knowledge in time for next summer

Do you want to create meaningful conversations with your customers, that they will remember long after they leave, helping them to take home memories to last a lifetime? Having a wealth of knowledge about your region can be your customer service superpower.

Register for our free ‘Know your destination’ online training modules today to take your visitor experience to the next level.

The training contains five modules, which you and your team can start and complete at their own pace.

For more information on the course and how to register, click here.



An update from VisitAberdeenshire’s Insights and Evaluation Manager

Deirdre O’Donnell is VisitAberdeenshire’s Insights and Evaluation Manager. Deirdre works with everyone in the organisation to ensure that we are keeping up to date with industry trends and evaluating the impact of our work. Day-to-day, Deirdre can be found collecting, analysing and interpreting data to guide our decision making.

Deirdre will be hosting December’s ‘VisitAberdeenshire Presents…’ webinar and will be providing an update on the programme of research we carry out, how you can get involved and how the findings can benefit your business.

To find out more about Deirdre’s work and the upcoming webinar, click here.



Dedicated Inclusive Tourism industry webpage

We have curated a page on our industry website to help businesses find resources to inspire and inform on best practices for developing an inclusive welcome and information provision. Here you can view past webinars and sign up to upcoming events, read examples from businesses in the region, and find links to external resources including VisitScotland’s Inclusive Tourism Toolkit. Click here for more.



Insights Focus: Adventure Tourism

Following the successful “Adventure awaits you” campaign earlier this year, VisitAberdeenshire has produced a Factsheet capturing all the key findings from our engaged respondents. You will be taken through campaign recall, how the marketing materials make them think and feel, what they went on to do having seen our marketing and, of course, did they book to come and visit us?

Read more here.



Meet us at the Transform Business Festival  

The Transform Business Festival is returning for its second year, and we are delighted to be exhibiting as an Ecosystem Partner. The festival offers a full day of inspiring speakers, workshops and support to help you transform your business. You will find us in the Ecosystem Village alongside other key business support partners and we hope to see you there.

The event is created and delivered by Business Gateway and Elevator, in partnership with Aberdeen City Council and Aberdeenshire Council.


Venue: Aberdeen Science Centre 

Date: Tuesday 14 November  

Find out more about the event here




Stagecoach Bluebird Night bus makes a return

Night buses have made a welcome return to Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire with thanks to funding from Aberdeen Inspired and Aberdeen City Council. The night buses aim to support the recovery of Aberdeen’s night-time economy by encouraging people to enjoy the city’s restaurants, bars,  nightclubs and venues by offering a way home. To find out more about the service, click here.

To download the poster to use in your business marketing, click here.



The Future of Food and Drink Summit – 28 November

The Times and The Sunday Times are delighted to announce a dedicated Future of Food and Drink Summit in partnership with Opportunity North East.

The summit will take place at P&J Live on Tuesday 28 November and will explore how the UK’s biggest manufacturing sector can deliver more entrepreneurial growth and high-skilled jobs and increase productivity and profitability.

To book tickets or to find out more, click here.



Scottish Agritourism Conference – 21 and 22 November

Scotland’s largest annual agritourism conference takes place at Perth Concert Hall on 21 and 22 November. The event is a great opportunity to network and build relationships and is open to members and non-members whether you are an existing agritourism business owner, farmer or crofter, considering agritourism, or hospitality and food and drink producer looking to grow. To find out more about the conference, click here.



External training opportunities

Business Gateway provides support to businesses and run a programme of regular webinars and workshops. To find out about any of the opportunities available, click here.

VisitScotland also provide a programme of training and events throughout the year to help develop and support industry growth. To find you more, click here.