Information on Tourism and Impact of COVID-19

Posted on Friday 13th March 2020 in General

Information on Tourism and Impact of COVID-19

MBTAG have collated some key information, guidelines and national resources in relation to COVID-19 and its impact on tourism businesses.

From next week onwards MBTAG will be focussing on a plan to drive and build digital intrigue for our destination and Scotland Starts Here. We must remain positive, creative and optimistic. Be there for each other and make a head start on planning for the season/s lying ahead and for 2021 which will hopefully see us rebuild with vigour and enthusiasm. We will be primarily focussing our digital marketing on staycations and the domestic market whilst also building online relationships with the travel trade for planning, training and development. We will get through this. We will turn Coronavirus on its Head!!  Just like we did when we launched Scotland Starts Here by turning Scotland on its Head!

We can still tell our stories, we can still inspire and we will! We will share with you our key outputs for the STA Signature Conference next week – lets create more experiences at this time.

Please see below for:

  • Key agencies and guidelines to follow.
  • VisitScotland Information and Please complete the survey so they can see how it is impacting tourism for Scotland.
  • Notes on a webinar that MBTAG linked into yesterday with UK Inbound & Kallaway Consulting regarding marketing at this time.



Please ensure you follow National agencies and Governmental guidelines which include:



VisitScotland update | Monitoring the effect of Covid-19 on the Scottish tourism industry – PLEASE COMPLETE THE SURVEY

We are closely monitoring the Covid-19 (Coronavirus) situation as it evolves and alongside our activities to provide advice and support during this difficult time, we’re proactively tracking the effects of Coronavirus on the industry. This is a rapidly changing situation and it’s important that we, alongside your valued regular input, can monitor developments.

We’ve created a survey which has been emailed out to all our business customers. We’d be very grateful if you could support by sharing with your members / businesses, and of course, should you run your own tourism business, by completing the questions regularly yourself. 

This research will allow us to see not only the overall impact on Scottish tourism but also, the impact it is having across different regions, visitor markets and business sectors so that we can consider how best we might adapt our activities. It will also allow us to inform the Scottish Government, other industry bodies and any media enquiries. We can assure you that all responses are anonymous.


This survey will be undertaken regularly to contribute to our understanding of the impact of this outbreak, should businesses receive further requests to participate in forthcoming weeks we would appreciate their ongoing support.

We really appreciate you taking the time to assist us with this survey so that we can get a good understanding of the impact on Scottish tourism. We’re aware that VisitBritain is also currently undertaking research into the situation at a UK level.

Kind regards,

Riddell Graham
Director of Industry & Destination Development


VisitScotland Advice and information | Coronavirus  

We’re closely monitoring the Covid-19 situation as it develops to ensure we’re in the best position to work with the Scottish Government and other key partners to manage what’s happening as effectively as possible.

There are currently no travel restrictions in place for visitors travelling to Scotland, but businesses and visitors alike should follow all current guidance to minimise the spread of the virus.

Visitors from other affected countries are likely going through a stressful and worrying time and may be looking for advice and support regarding their visit or travel home.

Our dedicated Covid-19 advice page is being updated on a regular basis once new information is made available so that tourism businesses have access to the latest advice and can support current and future visitors as the situation evolves. 




Scottish Enterprise Business Support

SE is launching a business support helpline offering information and support to businesses to manage the potential implications of COVID-19. The helpline will to go live on Friday, 13 March.

SE now has the following link on its website –

Additional info can also be found –



Advice from Kallaway Consulting – ‘Enhancing reputation at a time of adversity’

Kallaway Consulting kindly held an online seminar on ‘Enhancing reputation at a time of adversity’. Though not specific for Covid-19, the content of the presentation is designed to help businesses adapt their response and marketing in difficult situations such as the one we are facing and MBTAG have pulled together some helpful pointers for you:

  • Stay positive! Any response or public statement you make now can strengthen your brand well into the future
  • Consider your audiences. Not just your visitors but also suppliers – what might they think or need help with? What responses can you give that will support them and change their (possibly panicked) behaviour.
  • Consider the following 5 stages for adapting your marketing / online appearance / statements to audiences: 1) Stabilise and clarify: Be available for open dialogue that is factual and helpful for your audiences. Come up with a ‘Meanwhile Plan’ – if you can’t run at 100% for a while, what other actions or tasks can you consider? 2) Brand leadership: Think about how you can contribute positively to society, not just your business and build goodwill – does the community need support that you can lend with your expertise?  3) Connect with your audience in new ways: How can we maintain audience engagement? Could they experience your offer in a new way through online channels, delivery service etc? This is your time to be creative! 4) Build a foundation for regrowth: This will pass. Come up with plans to sell it forward and plan further ahead. 5) Relaunch: Be ready when the adversity has passed.
  • There are a number of questions you can ask yourself to plan ahead: 1) How is this situation impacting me, my brand and my offer? Can I get or already have customer or supplier feedback? 2) Who are my audiences and their thoughts? Visitors, staff members, suppliers or local stakeholders have different needs. 3) How do I want them to think of me? 4) Can I say something that would positively influence their thoughts of my brand for now and into the future? How can I be helpful to them? 5) What are my own limitations and business needs? 6) Do I have the resources I need for my brand and business? If not, what’s missing? 7) How will I measure the impact of the changes I make with this plan?
  • It’s the time to show that your brand and business is a safe and secure day out for those who do choose to make a trip. Reassure audiences that are planning trips or business dealings that you have done the necessary preparations to help them be safe. Keep engaging and be personal, don’t retreat into silence or corporate speak. It’s crucial to remain customer-centric!
  • Finally, MBTAG are here to connect businesses and support wherever we can. Get in touch with the team and with each other online!

We are working to make the full presentation / further advice available on the MBTAG website.

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