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VisitScotland Expands Travel Agent Programme in India

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Over 25 Indian travel agents will become Specialist Counsellors on Travel to Scotland this week at a special graduation ceremony in New Delhi.

 The very first SCOTSagents graduation ceremony in India will be attended by the Scottish Governments Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs, Fiona Hyslop.

The new SCOTSagents will then attend a Scotland Reception at the British High Commissioners Residence in New Delhi, where they will experience a celebration of Scottish food, drink and culture.

Scotland now boasts a group of over 1,400 travel agents throughout India, all currently selling Scotland to the Indian public, while 2012 itself has seen over 350 new Indian agents sign up to the programme this year alone.

This group are now informing potential visitors to Scotland all about the rich culture and destination experiences unique to Scotland, thanks to the innovative SCOTSagent programme.

Scottish Government Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs, Fiona Hyslop, said, I am delighted to be taking part in the celebration of the first graduation of Scots Agents in India who work hard on Scotlands behalf to promote Scotland to the world. Scotlands focus years, namely the Year of Creative Scotland this year, Year of Natural Scotland in 2013 and the year of Homecoming in 2014 will help position Scotland on the international stage as a dynamic and creative nation. I am in no doubt that the Scots Agents in India will use the programme of upcoming events, incorporating the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow and the Ryder Cup to promote Scotland around the world in a celebration of Scotlands greatest assets. Scotland is a place of rich culture, beauty and heritage and we welcome the world to come and experience some of what we have to offer.

It is hoped the visit and graduation ceremony will generate an even greater increase in the number of people signing up for the SCOTSagents programme.

The initiative, which is an online package covering destination education, now has over 7,000 ambassadors representing Scotland across the globe, in India, Europe, North America, and throughout Asia and the Middle East, and all qualified to sell Scotland to consumers in their home countries.

Through five seminars the SCOTSagents site teaches pretty much everything travel professionals need to know about Scotland, providing hints and tips on how to expand client bases, and advice on how to increase Scotland sales. Once registered for the programme, agents are sent regular updates on Scottish tourism products, events, festivals, exclusive offers and much more. In addition on the travel trade site, agents can access:

- Over 25 itineraries of Scotland
- Free of charge images
- Scotland videos
- Downloadable guides of Scotland

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