AA & Visit Scotland Star Ratings Explained

Here is an explanation of the AA and Visit Scotland (Tourist Board) Star Ratings – 1 star, 2 star, 3 star, 4 star, 5 star and Highly Commended.

AA Star Ratings

From 2006, Stars replaced Diamonds as the AA’s rating system for guest accommodation. Star ratings, from one to five, are used to assess guest accommodation. The following is a brief summary of standards expected from guest accommodation within their ratings.

One StarMinimum quality requirements for cleanliness, maintenance, hospitality, facilities and service. A cooked or substantial continental breakfast is served in a dining room or eating area, or bedroom only.

Two StarCourteous service, well-maintained beds, and breakfast prepared with a good level of care.

Three StarA friendly welcome and good-quality, well-presented beds and furniture. A choice of good-quality, freshly cooked food is available at breakfast.

Four StarAttentive, more personalised service. At least half of the bedrooms are ensuite or have private bathrooms. Very good beds and high quality furniture. Breakfast offers a greater choice, and fresh ingredients are cooked and presented with a high level of care.

Five StarAwareness of each guest’s needs with nothing being too much trouble. All bedrooms are ensuite or have a private bathroom. Excellent quality beds and furnishings. Breakfast includes specials/home-made items, high quality ingredients, and fresh local produce.

Highly Commended Guest Accommodation

Yellow Star  Yellow Stars indicate that an accommodation is in the top ten percent of its star rating. Yellow Stars only apply to three, four or five Star establishments.

Visit Scotland Star Ratings

VisitScotland (formerly known as the The Scottish Tourist Board) uses a five-level star-grading system to indicate the standard of customer care and range of facilities on offer at assessed establishments.

The awards focus on the standard of the welcome, hospitality and service they provide, as well as presentation and the standard of toilets, shop or café if they have them. The number of stars awarded to a property indicate that it is:

  1.          Acceptable – 1 star
  2.          Good – 2 stars
  3.          Very good – 3 stars
  4.          Excellent – 4 stars
  5.          Exceptional – 5 stars

Gold Awards

The Gold award recognises serviced accommodation businesses which consistently achieve the highest levels of excellence within their VisitScotland star grading. Businesses achieving the award will excel in the areas of customer care and hospitality and show evidence of a real commitment to staff development and training.