Hotelier card ‘a boost for resort tourism’

Blackpool's gay-friendly hotel group BAGS has launched a free discount card which is now one of the biggest in the country, offering money off at hotels, bars and restaurants across the resort. Pictured with the card are BAGS representatives David Walker, Rob Arlott and Tom Bowman.  PIC BY ROB LOCK 4-9-2013

Blackpool's gay-friendly hotel group BAGS has launched a free discount card which is now one of the biggest in the country, offering money off at hotels, bars and restaurants across the resort. Pictured with the card are BAGS representatives David Walker, Rob Arlott and Tom Bowman. PIC BY ROB LOCK 4-9-2013

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A discount card set up by a group of Blackpool hoteliers is going from strength to strength – with growing hopes it will help boost tourism in the resort.

More than 70 businesses have signed up to offer savings to card-holders since the initiative was launched last year by BAGs (Blackpool Accommodation for Gays).

Guests are entitled to a free card when they check into any of the group’s hotels, and can use it throughout their stay in the resort.

It is now believed to be one of the biggest discount schemes of its kind in the country.

BAGs chairman Geoff Brankston, of The Granby Lodge Hotel, on Lord Street, said the card was helping boost trade for both hoteliers and other businesses.

He said: “We started the discount card last year but it has really gained momentum in the last six months.

“I think as more people have signed up, it has encouraged others to come on board.

“It means that we as hoteliers can offer something extra to our guests, but also it is creating more business for other outlets in Blackpool so it is good news for everyone.

“We believe it is now one of the biggest discount schemes of its kind in the country.”

BAGs members have contacted businesses offering them chance to join up.

Those businesses which have signed up range from bars and coffee shops to restaurants, attractions, shops and hairdressers.

Founded in 1997, BAGs now boasts it is the largest independently gay owned holiday accommodation association in Europe.