What does tourism of the future look like? A student project looks to answer this question, and you can help!
By Tori Hamilton
I am a final year student at the Glasgow School of Art studying Product Design. For my degree show project I am looking at how the community of Oban can engage with “tourism of the future” in order to stay relevant and attract new audiences.
Over recent years there has been a significant shift in a travellers mindset. Today, fewer and fewer want to be identified as tourists. Instead, new generations of travellers seek out experiences that not only provide a photo opportunity, but also get their hands “dirty” and immerse them in the destination. The travellers yearn for a sense of “localhood', looking to enjoy the true, real and authentic experiences, which makes a destination stand out and unique.
Although from Glasgow, I have been brought up around Oban, as most of my family are from Fort William and Connel, and I believe Oban has a lot potential to embrace the changes of tourism to benefit both the destination and its community. Locals are not sideshow, but, rather, one of the major attractions of a destination. The delivery of an authentic experience depends upon the support of the community. The liveability and appeal of Oban depends on our ability to ensure a harmonious interaction between visitors and you. Therefore my project is focussed around engaging with as many locals as possible to ensure they are much as part of this process in my project as much as I am.
My role and intent for the workshop
On Saturday the 13th of April I will be hosting a workshop at the Rockfield Centre from the hours of 11am - 3pm. Please pop in if you would like to jointhe conversation with myself and other members of the community as we share ideas, tell stories, collaborate to picture a new beginning of tourism. Discover about the past, present and most importantly, the future of Oban.
My role in this workshop is to use creative research, public involvement and engagement tools to illustrate the potential of Oban and how it can benefit the community. To challenge assumptions and identify characteristics of the millennial segment that is most likely to cause a significant disruption in the way the tourism sector is currently structured. I am here to act as a researcher with no intent to make any significant changes in the community, purely to use my role to listen and reveal opportunities that might not of been shown or relevant before. To give something back to the community, I will collate this research and create a 'future vision of Oban'. A community vision provides a shared picture of the result that a community wants to create. This will hopefully help local businesses to understand their market even better and identify ways to innovate their offer for specific tourist groups.
This event is free and open to the public. We are looking for groups, businesses, organisations and any members of the wider community to join us in a tourism journey into the future. Lunch will be provided plus refreshments.
Please reserve your place at this FREE workshop by booking using the link on the 'Re-Imagining Oban' facebook event. I look forward to seeing you there!
Morning session begins at 11am - 1pm
Light lunch 1pm -2pm
Afternoon session 2pm - 3pm