And the next B&B stop is …

The face of tourism is changing and no organization is having a bigger impact than AirB&B. Kirkcaldy is embracing the unique accommodation provider as it creates a new offering for visitors.

AirB&B came into being in 2009. Today, it has more than 3,000,000 properties listed across 191 countries. Kirkcaldy is surrounded by traditional tourist honeypots – from the world-renowned St Andrews to picturesque villages along the Kingdom’s coastline – all attracting visitors year round.

The town’s business improvement district – Kirkcaldy4All – is looking at how it can make more from its location on the tourist trail. BID manager, Bill Harvey, explains: “We represent more than 400 businesses across Kirkcaldy – and yet only one of those is an accommodation provider. We rely on visitors stepping off the beaten track to come into town and discover what we have to offer. In today’s digitally connected world, that is becoming easier.

In 2016, Kirkcaldy4All took on the management of the town’s Wi-Fi network. Analysis of the data is showing that people from many far-flung destinations are visiting – but they are not staying. Bill adds: “We have a fantastic offering. Not only are we Fife’s biggest retail destination, but we have a brilliant collection of attractions – from the Adam Smith Theatre and our Galleries to parks, gardens and the revitalized mile-long waterfront forming one of the most easily accessible sections of Fife’s Coastal Path.”

Bill’s team has looked at the town’s AirB&B listings. He says: “There are around 30 properties listed in the town – and another 50 or so within a 5-10 minute drive. That equates to well over 100 beds available for those looking to visit and explore the area. And whilst we’re not taking anything away from the more traditional tourist destinations, our listings provide the chance to stay in a range of properties – from room and apartments to cottages and whole houses – from as little as £25 per night.

Bill says the unique service gives Kirkcaldy a real opportunity. He adds: “Many in tourism overlook AirB&B, and yet what could be better for anyone visiting our area than to stay with a person or family who live and work here – someone who can tell them not only the best places to eat, drink and shop but also to offer their knowledge and experience of our attractions and places to discover and explore.

Kirkcaldy4All will soon be including AirB&B in their digital and social media promotion. Bill concludes: “We are engaging with thousands every week, sharing video content that features our businesses and community partners and showcases all that Kirkcaldy has to offer. By highlighting the opportunity to stay here, we will be helping to attract more people to spend more time in our town – all to the benefit of our levy-payers and the wider community.

 

For more information on the town’s AirB&B listings, please follow this link.

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