WorldHost Customer Service Programme

Inverness and Loch Ness “king of the castle” for its warm welcome to visitors…and that’s official!

Local hospitality and tourism businesses celebrated on the 18th May as Inverness and Loch Ness was officially named as a WorldHost® Recognised Destination in honour of its exceptional customer service.

Some 53 businesses in the area, ranging from distilleries and visitor attractions to transport and activity businesses have undergone the specialist customer service training to become WorldHost recognised.

Visit Inverness Loch Ness was instrumental in supporting the roll-out of the WorldHost customer service training programme over the past 2 years.  Graeme Ambrose, CEO said, “By 2020 customer service is expected to overtake price and product as a brand differentiator. We are very grateful to those businesses who helped the area achieve this accolade and take advantage of this great opportunity to raise their game and be better placed to compete”.

David Allen, director of Scotland for People 1st said at the Award Presentation, “I am delighted that we are celebrating Inverness and Loch Ness becoming the second region in Scotland to achieve WorldHost Destination Status. It’s fantastic to see the commitment that so many local businesses across the region have now made to providing excellent service for the regions visitors. While the immediate benefits of great customer service are clear, it is also vital for the long-term, future success of tourism in Scotland, too. Employers see it as the most important skill needed in their business in the next five years.”

Get your WorldHost badge for excellent customer service!

By 2020, customer service is expected to overtake price and product as a brand differentiator.  WorldHost training provides businesses with the opportunnity to gain a highly-regarded "must-have" badge for customer service.

When you train 50% of your "front line" staff on the 1 day course, you’ll be able to gain WorldHost Recognised Business status.

The WorldHost Principles of Customer Service programme will give your staff the skills and knowledge to deliver excellent customer service that will give your business a great reputation.  We know that, in an increasingly competitive business environment, you need to work even harder to retain customers and win new ones – and that’s where this training can help.

Through this interactive programme, Marina Huggett, Tourism Excellence Consultancy will get your staff to think about their own experiences of good and bad service, understand why their role has such an impact on your customers’ experience and learn vital communication and listening skills that will set them up for success.

Some benefits identified by previous participants:

1. Increased revenue, average visitor spend and net sales
2. Improved year-round occupancy levels
3. An increase in repeat business and referrals
4. Better customer service ratings and/or quality assurance scores
5. Increased staff motivation and satisfaction
6. Staff that are empowered to deliver high quality and consistent customer service to all of their customers
7. Reduced absenteeism and staff turnover levels
8. Better communication between staff
9. An increase in applications for job vacancies
10. An increased commitment from employees to support the growth and improvement of the business and the local visitor economy
11. Positive PR opportunities
12. Being able to display the WorldHost recognised Business logo on all business-related collateral, websites and other promotional/sales materials

What will you and/or your staff learn on the programme?

You/your staff will learn:
• Why customer service is such an important part of their role
• How to make an excellent first impression and make customers feel welcome
• How using customers’ names can help to create a good rapport, and techniques for remembering names
• Communication skills for success
• How to empathise with customers, and why handling their concerns is so important
• Why listening is an essential part of the customer service process, and how to do it effectively
• The value of tourism, and the important role they play in generating revenue for your business and the wider tourism economy
• How to ‘go the extra mile’ – including making five commitments on how they will do this in your business

“Jacobite have participated in the WorldHost programme for over 3 years now. We were the first visitor attraction in the Highlands to go for WorldHost recognition status. Our team gained a great deal and the recognition status keeps them motivated and inspired to keep up the momentum of great service and to go the extra mile for all our guests. They know and understand how to deal positively with difficult situations which is a bonus.”  Freda Newton, Managing Director, Loch Ness by Jacobite

“Rather than provision of great service being a top-down approach in an organisation, World Host is a great tool for empowering and encouraging front line members of staff to take responsibility for coming up with their own ideas on how to make their guests’ experience more memorable.”  Mike Dunthorne, Owner, Boots N Paddles

“The WorldHost training has been simply inspirational. It has provided the platform for us to ensure every client has an ‘escape the ordinary’ experience during their time with us. Everyone in our team is proud of our WorldHost Recognised Business status and we try to live up to that title every day.”  Gillian Lacey-Solymar, owner, Achnagairn Castle and Luxury Lodges

What is the cost?

The full cost of the training is £95 but at the moment People 1st offer a £40 subsidy reducing the cost to £55.  This subsidy is only available for SME businesses who meet the criteria set out on People 1st's website – click here for further information. 

More dates coming soon for 2017!

New training dates will be announced soon. The training takes place in the Visit Inverness Loch Ness office, c/o Forestry Commission, Tower Road, Smithton, Inverness. However, we can arrange to hold the training at your premises if you have 8 or more staff.

For more information please e-mail or  For more information on WorldHost please click here

WorldHost Accredited Businesses in Inverness Loch Ness Area

Loch Ness by Jacobite
Achnagairn Estate
Morag's Lodge
Loch Ness Centre and Exhibition
The Dairy at Daviot Luxury Self-catering
Achmony Holidays
Steadings at the Grouse & Trout
St Anns Guest House
Boots N' Paddles
Highland Free Spirit
Higher Ground Consultancy
Balblair Self-Catering Cottages
Glendoune B&B
Castle View Guest House
Great Glen B&B
Loch Ness Glamping
Fraser House
Bellfield Cottage
Lann Dearg Studios
Eastgate Shopping Centre Team
Visit Scotland Information Centre - The Picnic Area, Inverness
Visit Scotland Information Centre - Drumnadrochit
Visit Scotland Information Centre - Inverness
Foyer House
Culligran Cottages
Easter Dalziel
Loch Ness Shores Camping and Caravanning Club
Daviot Lodge
Dinichean House
Highland Campervans
Westward B&B
Inverness Taxis
Royston Guest House
CBRE Managed Services Ltd
Highlands & Islands Airports Ltd - Inverness Airport
Tomich Holidays
Invermoriston Holidays
Glenurquhart House Hotel
Carndaisy House
Loch Ness Clansman Hotel
Malvern B&B
Moyness Guest House
The Gun Lodge Hotel
Around Loch Ness Tours
Leanach Farm
Pine Chalets
Inverglen Guest House
Explore Highland
Cawdor Tavern
Foyers Stores and Waterfall Cafe
Whitebridge Hotel
Inverness Centre