SCOTLAND’S Hogmanay parties are set to generate more than £40 million as the country prepares for one of its most lucrative nights of the year.
Tourism bosses are expecting more than 165,000 visitors to Edinburgh alone as a result of the capital’s annual festive bash.
However, the celebrations in Auld Reekie are just part of the nationwide events taking place with hotels, pubs and businesses set to benefit from the global reputation of Scotland’s Hogmanay revelries.
Tickets for many of this year’s events are already sold out with organisers warning anyone who hasn’t secured their briefs to act quickly.
Malcolm Roughead, chief executive of VisitScotland, said: “Hogmanay plays an important role in the Scottish tourism industry, with tens of thousands of revellers flocking to the ultimate New Year street party in Edinburgh each year.
“Tourism is the heartbeat of the Scottish economy, causing a ripple effect which touches every industry and community, creating employment and economic growth.”
Last year, an impact study undertaken by the organisers of Edinburgh’s Hogmanay, found that the event generated £39m for Edinburgh’s economy and attracted more than 165,000 visitors from over 80 countries to smaller, regional gatherings.
The event also acts as a gateway to the rest of Scotland, with visitors to Edinburgh spending an average 4.3 nights in Scotland in total.
And while Edinburgh’s Hogmanay is expected to bring in tens of millions in revenue again, cities, towns and villages across Scotland will also benefit.
For example, the overall economic impact of Stirling’s event in previous years has been estimated to be £565,000 in Scotland, with £335,000 brought to the Stirling area.
And The Met Office has said there is little risk of weather spoiling the party, as happened in 2003 and 2006 when high winds and storms forced organisers to cancel the Edinburgh event.
Forecaster Mark Wilson said: “Scotland as a whole should have fairly quiet weather into the New Year.
“It will be quite cloudy with some patchy rain but it should be a dry night for most areas and temperatures will be fairly mild and above freezing.”