Loves Local

Published: 8th November 2022
Last updated: 16th November 2022

Scotland Loves Local Gift Card

Inveraray shops

I write to you on behalf of Scotland Loves Local – the campaign that is encouraging people across Scotland to choose local – in doing so, supporting local businesses and building stronger and more resilient local communities.

The Scotland Loves Local Gift Card is one way of helping people to do just that. A localised product for each of Scotland’s 32 local authority areas, the Scotland Loves Local Gift Card can only be spent in businesses that have a ‘bricks and mortar’ presence in that local authority area, therefore locking that spend into the local area.

Gift cards can be purchased at Gift card recipients can also visit this website to find out where they can spend their gift card.

As a localised product for local businesses and communities, we are keen to work with your community council to unlock the potential of the Scotland Loves Local Gift Card in your local area.

Here’s how you can help.

Help us to register businesses

We want every business across Scotland to be able to take payments through the Scotland Loves Local Gift Card and reap the benefits of this fantastic scheme.

As we look towards the busy Christmas trading period, I would be very grateful for the support of the community council in promoting the simple registration process amongst businesses in your local area.

The Gift Card uses the existing MasterCard network, meaning it is free for businesses to register to receive payments. Businesses simply need to undertake a two-step process at our registration page: You can help them to do that by:

  1. Sharing the easy-to-use registration details with local businesses. Within this asset pack there are two Business Engagement leaflets, which include simple instructions on how to register, details of what happens after businesses have registered, and a FAQ.
  2. Promoting the initiative on social media. If your community council uses social media, you can also find various materials to use on social media to encourage businesses to register, including social media cards and an animated video. Please feel free to share these assets with other groups in the local area who may be willing to support the initiative.

Using the Scotland Loves Local Gift Card to support and reward local people

Not only does the Scotland Loves Local Gift Card lock money into the local economy, but it can be used in a variety of innovative ways to support and reward people in the local area too. Working with Local Authorities, Business Improvement Districts, community groups and businesses across Scotland we have already proven that the Scotland Loves Local Gift Card has limitless potential to drive footfall in town centres, reward employees, and provide dignified support to people in need.

Your community council can be part of this too, by:

  1. Encouraging employers to say ‘thank you’ to employees by purchasing Scotland Loves Local Gift Cards as a staff incentive and reward, or a Christmas gift. Many organisations are choosing to replace existing staff rewards with the Scotland Loves Local Gift Card as a local alternative – locking money into the local area. Within the asset pack you can find a range of materials to promote the Scotland Loves Local Gift Card to employers in your local area, including social media cards and an animated video.
  2. Supporting those who are in need through community disbursal. Some local authorities have used the Scotland Loves Local Gift Card as a means of providing dignified support to people in need during the cost-of-living crisis. Community councils can also use reserves to undertake small-scale community disbursal schemes. You can read a case study outlining how Barr Community Council in South Ayrshire did it online here.
  3. Driving footfall to your local town centre. Statistics show that customers spend up to 65% more on top of the value of their gift card when they redeem it. By promoting the Scotland Loves Local Gift Card as an alternative gift this Christmas, you can drive further footfall to your town and community, and lock that spending into the local economy. Contained within the asset pack are various materials which can help you encourage purchases of the Scotland Loves Local Gift Card as the truly local choice this Christmas.

If you require further information or assistance, Scotland’s Towns Partnership would be glad to help. Get in touch with us at and a member of our team would be pleased to work with you to make the Scotland Loves Local Gift Card a success in your area.

When Scotland Loves Local Gift Cards are seen as local currencies, the potential for regeneration and transformation in our Scottish regions is immense. With your support, I hope we will allow businesses and communities across Scotland to unlock a new level of local spending, and benefit from this truly innovative scheme.

Yours sincerely

Phil Prentice

Chief Officer, Scotland’s Towns Partnership