‘Staycations – Should I stay or should I go?’ event takes place at the St Brycedale Kirk in Kirkcaldy. 

Fife College, in conjunction with local charity Greener Kirkcaldy, held a student debate on the subject of staycations at the St Brycedale Kirk in Kirkcaldy recently. 

The debate, titled ‘Staycations – Should I stay or should I go?’ was attended by Claire Baker MSP - Deputy Convener of the Culture, Tourism, Europe and External Affairs Committee, and representatives from SEPA, Fife Council, Sustrans, Edinburgh University, and the River Leven Project Board. 

This is the first time the College has hosted this type of event which was part funded by the Scottish Government. With over 70 students and visitors attending, there was a good cross section of opinion and plenty of opportunity for participation.

Tourism and Event students discussed opportunities and challenges in attempting to reduce passenger air miles and encouraging people to holiday in Scotland. The key debate was around the impacts of flights abroad, the barriers to holidaying in Scotland, and the sorts of action that could enhance the attraction of holidays in Scotland.

Claire Baker MSP, said: “It was a pleasure to join the students in their excellent discussion and debate.  Tourism is a growing sector of Scotland’s economy and it is positive to hear students engaging with the challenges facing tourism in the future.  I was impressed by their enthusiasm and knowledge and their ideas will help inform my work in the Scottish Parliament.”

John Wincott, Environmental Services Coordinator at Fife College, said: “It was great for Fife College students to be involved in such a ground breaking event.  The students held a lively debate and identified issues that may put people off holidaying at home, or having a ‘staycation’. Key factors raised were infrastructure including transport; price, as it can often be cheaper to holiday abroad rather than in Scotland, bad weather and a lack of child friendly attractions.

“Possible ways to encourage growth in staycation holidays suggested were a tourist tax that can be used to develop the tourist sector and increasing the carbon tax on flights, both of which could help fund local development.  Another suggestion was a ‘tourist card’ that gives discount on entrance fees to all attractions.

“These young people are the next generation in tourism professionals and listening to their views, challenges, and ideas can play a big part in increasing the popularity of staycations.”

For more information about Tourism, Events and Customer Service courses available at Fife College visit our course pages or call the Fife College hotline on 0334 248 0115.