1. Introduction

Let’s keep in touch and work together. Opportunities for getting involved with our campaigns and trade events and exhibitions are usually announced in our regular newsletters and on twitter.

If you’ve specific questions about running a tourism business or starting a business from scratch then contact our colleagues at Business Wales.

2. Visit Wales Regional Team

Here are your contacts in the regions:

North Wales 

Andrew Forfar – AndrewWallace.Forfar@gov.wales

Ceri Turner - Ceri.Turner2@gov.wales

Mid Wales

Helen Jones – Helen.Jones28@gov.wales

Gwawr Price - Gwawr.Price3@gov.wales

South West 

Philip Abraham – Philip.Abraham@gov.wales

Jane Donald – Jane.Donald@gov.wales

South East 

Louisa Giles - Louisa.Giles@gov.wales

For general emails to the Regional team as a whole please contact them using regionaltourism@gov.wales  

3. Regional Tourism Forum

A Regional Fora was established in 2014 to drive the delivery of the tourism strategy in each region. There is a forum in each region - north, mid, south east and south west. The forum meets three/four times a year to discuss and review tourism developments and to bring together key stakeholders within the region. 

Each forum includes a Tourism Advisory Board member whose role it is to feed information at a national level and represent the region at the Board meetings. 

The forum aims to identify:

  • which individual business or destinations can work more closely together within the region
  • opportunities for tourism development within the region
  • a regional perspective feed into the Minister’s Tourism Advisory Board
  • the method for feeding into each forum through destination management partnerships

North Wales Forum

Terms of Reference

Minutes - 20 February 2018

Minutes - 21 June 2017

Mid Wales Forum

Terms of Reference

Minutes - 16 June 2017

South West Wales Forum

Terms of Reference

Minutes - 03 May 2018

Minutes - 25 January 2018

Minutes - 05 October 2017

South East Wales Forum

Terms of Reference

Minutes - 15 February 2018

Minutes - 28 September 2017

 

4. Tourism Ambassador Programme

A Tourism Ambassador:

  • is a welcoming host
  • is a source of useful information
  • is an expert on all things around them
  • is local and passionate about their area
  • is dedicated to unravelling hidden gems
  • provides a unique and authentic experience
  • is aware of the importance of tourism to the local economy
  • helps to develop and sustain a destination

The aim of any Ambassador programme is to recruit suitable individuals to act as a welcoming host and a source of information for a destination.

The benefits that Tourism Ambassadors bring to destinations include:

  • enhancing the Visitor Experience
  • increased footfall 
  • increasing economic impact
  • increasing visitor spend
  • extending length of stay
  • encouraging repeat visits
  • improving product/local knowledge and customer service skills
  • active networking, locally and nationally
  • improved communication between destinations
  • business development
  • support for the visitor economy

Tourism Ambassador Programmes – areas covered

The current programmes each have their own distinctive offerings and regional characteristics.  Each of these programmes has observed the positive effect it can have.

The following gives a snapshot of the geographic areas covered by each programme:

You can find out more information about each Ambassador Programme by clicking on the links.
 

5. Wales Destination Management Partnerships

No matter the definition of a destination, foremost it must make sense to the visitor.  A visitor’s perspective of a destination is an essential part of destination management.

Tourism destinations across Wales have been successfully developing strong public/private sector partnerships over the past few years, the key aim being to improve the approach to and communication of destination management. 

To achieve this aim each destination partnership has developed a plan which sets out the priorities for tourism development within their destination over the next few years.

Please see below to find out more information on each destination management partnership and their current plans and priorities:

 

6. Food Tourism

Welsh Government defines food tourism as: 

‘any activity that promotes a high quality, distinctive, local and sustainable food experience linked to a particular place’

We worked with the Welsh Government’s Food Division to launch the Food Tourism Action Plan for Wales 2015-2020. It recognises the potential for growth in this sector. 

By highlighting regional products we help visitors to Wales uncover local culinary gems. Offering an authentic Welsh food and drink experience helps make your business unique.

Our simple to use toolkits can help you improve your food offer and visitor experience.

The Food Tourism Toolkit

Hints, tips, sample menus and best practice that will be useful to your business.

The Welsh Breakfast Toolkit

More hints and tips on offering a great Welsh breakfast with sample menus.

The Promotional Toolkit

Helps you to plan, develop and improve food tourism in your area or network. 

The Festivals Toolkit

A toolkit that provides help to plan, develop and improve your food festival, or any event.

7. Sustainable Tourism

Beautiful landscapes and coastlines are the very foundation of tourism in Wales. We rely on the integrity of the natural environment. Sustainability will always be a key priority when developing tourism in Wales.

To be sustainable, tourism needs to:

  • consider the needs and quality of life of local communities
  • enhance and respect culture and local traditions
  • contribute to local economic prosperity
  • minimise damage to the environment

The benefits of having a sustainable business include:

  • conservation and protection of the environment
  • investment in your local community
  • money savings
  • improvement of the quality of your product
  • increased marketing opportunities

Visit Wales has developed this online and interactive Sustainable Tourism Toolkit. A report gets produced based on the answers you give. The report suggests ways of creating a more sustainable business.

8. Tourism Association sustainability toolkit

The independent tourism association review has been responsible for:

  • the development of the tool kit “Making your tourism association more sustainable".  This offers great advice and identifies many exemplar tourism associations
  • improvements to communications including
    • increased twitter activity – information is communicated regularly across our twitter accounts with an increase in our followers. Get involved by following us on @VisitWalesBiz and @CroesoCymruBus
    • sharing of communication schedules to encourage the contribution of appropriate content. To increase local interest in newsletters and bulletins
    • better engagement between tourism association members and regional engagement forums. Improving the flow of information between Visit Wales and the various areas of the tourism industry they represent. So take time to acquaint yourselves with the forum members in your area
  • improvements to the RTEF and TPIF application criteria. Although budget constraints will always limit the level of financial support, the review led to
    • the implementation of a two year funding period 
    • inclusion of project staff costs as eligible expenditure.

TOURISM ASSOCIATION MEETING - 13 October 2017  

Presentations included: 

Peter Cole, Cole & Shaw
Tourism Association Review – Overview

Fiona Wilton – Chair, Wye Valley & Forest of Dean Tourism 
Responding to a visitor’s view of a destination rather than lines on maps but still having to deal with the administrative fallout

Jude Leitch -  Director, Northumberland Tourism
Managing the transition from public to private funding

Jim Jones – Managing Director, North Wales Tourism
Making the organisation essential to the wider destination marketing effort (on a commercial basis) not only the direct benefits to members

Captain  Stephen Crocker – Chairman, Tourism Swansea Bay 
Building a critical mass of members to allow employment of a professional executive

9. Travel trade and business tourism

The travel trade has a full range of organisations that operate as intermediaries in the travel and tourism industry. These typically include:

  • tour operators
  • coach operators
  • wholesalers
  • professional conference organisers
  • destination and event management companies
  • travel agents

Our role is to influence buyers in the travel trade and business tourism sectors. Our aim is to encourage these buyers to bring business to Wales. Our travel trade work involves establishing and maintaining relationships with individuals and companies who currently include Wales in their programmes, or who have the potential to include Wales in the future.

If you’d like to generate additional sales to increase your visitor numbers and fill spare capacity, you may wish to consider working with the leisure travel trade and business tourism sectors. For a flavour of our work in this area please go to the Travel Trade Website

Marketing your product internationally

Are you thinking of developing your tourism product to attract more overseas visitors? Take a look at the different opportunities available to help raise your international profile.

10. Promoting your business

Our consumer website has a search feature to find:

  • accommodation
  • activities
  • attractions
  • events

To add or update your business or event details, contact your local representative.

11. Tourism Summit - May 2017

A one-day Tourism Summit, organised by Visit Wales and Food & Drink Wales took place on 18 May 2017 at the Hotel Metropole, Llandrindod Wells.

This pioneering event provided the opportunity for tourism businesses:

  • to engage with experts and leaders in the industry
  • to discuss the trends and challenges to the Tourism industry
  • to exchange and learn from experts 
  • to gain hands-on ideas to help them thrive in 2017 and beyond
  • to enjoy a variety of Welsh food and drink products

Further details and presentations are available on the Tourism Summit pages.