North West News

Uncertain Future Funding for DMO's

Go To Places CEO warns of uncertain future funding for DMOs and highlights the importance of outsourcing, collaboration and smarter working.

Speaking at The Tourism Consultants’ Network Conference in Manchester today, Go To Places Deputy CEO David Curtis-Brignell warned delegates of the uncertain future of local government funding for Destination Management Organisations (DMOs) and the inevitability of further budget cuts.
His presentation to UK tourism delegates outlined a prediction that with demands on local authorities for services such as social care provision, the 53% cut in tourism funding that has already been seen in the previous 9 years, will only get worse. He also suggested that this decrease, combined with a £15.7m cut in Government funding to councils in the decade 2010-2020, will mean that budgets for tourism promotion and management are at risk. He commented, “DMOs can no longer rely on traditional sources of long-term funding or traditional models of operation and will have to look at new operating and funding models going forwards which will include outsourcing in order to maintain a tourism service which is affordable.”
He went on to say, “At Go To Places we see the future of the DMO funding model as a mix of outsourcing and smarter working. The solution to funding uncertainty lies in collaborating with other destinations to create “Super DMOs” which will bring much needed economies of scale.”
The Go To Places’ destination management model has been developed through its 17 years’ experience as Kent’s DMO. This model is now being effectively delivered through other portfolio businesses, such as Visit Herts (Hertfordshire).
Go To Places is the only organisation delivering an official DMO in more than one county and the success of Visit Herts has been due to a model which capitalises on economies of scale. This includes offering expertise on funding bids, helping tourism and leisure businesses to better understand their market and audience, and sharing proven, effective marketing campaigns.