AIG Women’s Open Tees Up Boost For BusinessNeil Hardie
Tourism experts are predicting a long-lasting business boost for Angus when the AIG Women’s Open tees off today.
The tourism sector is expecting a business boom as millions of viewers tune in across the globe.
Around 8,000 fans will attend the championship in Carnoustie on each of the four days, with millions more tuning in on TV.
German golfer Sophia Popov will defend her title at the famous course in Angus, where local businesses are expected to receive a huge boost after lockdown restrictions were eased in time to welcome golf fans to Carnoustie.
The event is expected to contribute £6 million to the local economy, with hotels booked out across the region.
However, VisitScotland predicts long-term benefits for the Carnoustie community hosting this event on the world stage.
A spokesman for VisitScotland said: “The event has two-fold benefits – the impact during the week, and the long-term tourism. It’ll bring in lots of fans as well as global TV coverage.
“By promoting the area to respective visitors, we’ll hopefully see this major event inspire future visits.
“Women’s golf has grown significantly across the world, in areas like Thailand and Japan.
“Unfortunately because of Covid, we’re not seeing the same number of international visitors.
“However, the impact of the golfers and the attention they attract can’t be overstated. The average golf tourist spends about four and a half times more than a regular tourist.”
Angus Council reported a “boom” in club membership during the pandemic at courses across the east of Scotland.
“When major events come into specific regions, we see a big lift for local suppliers,” added the spokesman.
“Especially given last 16 months, this could bring a post-Covid boost to the local community.”
A re-admission policy will be in place at the tournament to let the fans visit local cafes, shops and restaurants.
Mark Salmond, Angus Council’s Communities Convener, said: “Hosting a major championship is fantastic news for Carnoustie and Angus.
“Golf tourism is very important to us, contributing £20 million annually and supporting 900 jobs in Angus. Hosting the Women’s Open will provide a further boost.”