It is just 12 months since the Belfast Ambassadors took up their role of enhancing and improving the visitor experience in the city, and in that time, they have welcomed over 45,268 visitors.
The team of four, full-time Belfast Ambassadors provide a warm welcome to visitors, tourists, workers and residents in the city centre offering help and advice on anything from street directions, names and meanings of monuments to the best places to eat and shop. The team also act as a direct contact for local businesses.
Introduced by Belfast One – The Belfast City Centre Improvement District – and The Welcome People, the Belfast Ambassadors on average have assisted 2,772 visitors per month which equates to 23 visitors per hour.
Bronagh Lawlor, Managing Director of Belfast One said: “The Belfast Ambassadors provide a very important service in our City – one which Enhances the visitor experience in a unique and engaging way and helps promote Belfast as a friendly, welcoming and hospitable place to visit.
“The Ambassadors are knowledgeable, fun and can guide people to the top spots for shopping, eating, socialising or just where to hang out to enjoy the city’s legendary craic. Their aim is to increase the experience of people travelling to the city, as well as increasing the amount of time people spend here.”
“They also provide a vital link between us at Belfast One and the businesses in our area. They can feed back any issues, concerns or ideas that can help us in our goal to transform Belfast City Centre into a clean, safe, bustling twenty-four hour culture full of people loving it. ”
The Welcome People already operate in 21 other cities and towns across the UK, and the partnership with Belfast One is their first venture in Northern Ireland.
David Milller from The Welcome People said he has been delighted with the service in its first year, he said: “We have brought our experience from working in the shopping districts of London and in cities such as Leeds, Liverpool and Manchester to Belfast and to-date, it has been a huge success.
“Visitors can now be guided to the hidden gems of Belfast – those that aren’t necessarily on shopping guides or websites, and are what makes this city unique. They can also be given access to any city deals or offers that are on that make visitors feel special and give them a value-for-money experience making them more likely to return, or recommend Belfast to others.”
Belfast One is now into the second of a five-year marketing strategy which aims to drive domestic footfall into the City Centre by promoting the fantastic retail, leisure, culture and entertainment offering and showcasing what a brilliantly unique city Belfast is.