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Ryder Cup 2014 highlights

The Ryder Cup helped to make it a bumper year for tourism in Scotland

Date : 18/12/2014

The Ryder Cup helped to make it a bumper year for tourism in Scotland. We take a closer look at the recently released 2014 Ryder Cup Highlights Report.

The Ryder Cup, it’s a long-standing battle between golfing giants from America and Europe. The eagerly anticipated return of the Ryder Cup to Scotland was well worth the wait, not least due to Europe’s third successive win over America 16.5 to 11.5.

Visitor numbers

A staggering 250,000 spectators attended the three day tournament and three days of practice sessions. Visitors travelled from a total of 96 different countries, and non-Scottish visitors accounted for 62 per cent of total. 

The Scotland Welcomes the World zone in the Spectator Village counted 75,000 visitors through the door.
Edinburgh Airport saw a 2.9 per cent and Glasgow Airport a 2.4 per cent rise in passenger numbers in September compared to the previous year.

A huge operation

7,500 staff were on hand at peak times each day to ensure the event’s smooth-running, which was commended by Sky Sports golf analyst Butch Harmon who said The 2014 Ryder Cup was the “best organised Ryder Cup ever”. 

The Ryder Cup employed 5,000 people on event-related projects and 1,500 temporary support jobs were created. 1,800 event volunteers were hired for the event, and an incredible 17,000 people from 55 countries applied for one of the coveted roles.

To provide support services for security, IT, waste management, construction and merchandise 14 Scottish companies were awarded contracts and the Gala Concert was awarded to Glasgow events management contractors DF Concerts.

260,000 meals were served each day, and one Scottish caterer generated a six-figure sum from the event. 


Upgraded telecommunications network boosted 3G and 4G networks along with WiFi hotspots onsite and on public transport serving the routes in, and a spectator app was created which included a function to locate players on the course, up to the minute scores and even watching the action elsewhere through Sky Sports on tablets and phones. 660,632 users downloaded the app.

There were 698,089 mentions of the Ryder Cup and associated keywords on social networks between 22 and 29 September and 449,982 Ryder Cup related tweets from 210,650 unique sources.

Spectators were given a wristband which allowed them to take part in activities in the Spectator Village and engage with Official Partner activities as well as win prizes for those who checked in at points around the course.

Securing the future of golf

For the first time in Europe, the Junior Ryder Cup tournament was played alongside the main event, and the European team included Blairgowrie Golf Club member Bradley Neil. This year’s event the highest attendance of any Junior Ryder Cup tournament and 3,000 children were inspired to take up golf through Scotland’s ClubGolf junior programme, in addition to 350,000 being introduced to golf through its schools programme.

Read the full report

There are lots more great facts and figures on the event in the 2014 Ryder Cup Highlight Report.

Further reading

Tourism Intelligence Guide on Golf
Whisky and golf boost tourism industry
Ryder Cup boosts Scotland’s events industry credibility