A group of American travel professionals enjoyed a visit to Downpatrick and Northern Ireland recently, prior to attending a B2B workshop in Galway. They were group tour organisers, responsible for making the travel arrangements for a range of groups across the US, including church, sporting and cruise groups.
Carefully selected and invited here by Tourism Ireland in New York, the itinerary for the group organisers was designed by the Northern Ireland Tourist Board. They enjoyed a guided tour of Down Cathedral and a visit to the St Patrick Centre, Downpatrick before travelling onto the Navan Centre and Fort in Co Armagh. They overnighted at the Killyhevlin Hotel in Co Fermanagh.
Joe Byrne, Tourism Ireland’s Executive Vice President North America, said: “Tourism Ireland is delighted to bring these group tour organisers to Northern Ireland. We believe it is extremely important for influential decision-makers such as these to experience for themselves the high standard of the tourism product available, so they know what we have to offer and are better equipped to advise their clients on future travel plans.
“North America is an extremely important market for tourism to Northern Ireland and the island of Ireland and Tourism Ireland is working hard to return the market to growth in 2011. Tourism Ireland is targeting group organisers, as well as online and traditional travel agents and tour operators, through a programme of B2B workshops, email marketing, sales missions and familiarisation visits throughout 2011.”
Dr Tim Campbell, St Patrick Centre, Downpatrick (right) with Mary O’Shea, Tourism Ireland, New York (left); Patricia Cotti, Gramatan Travel New York; and Angela Urcivoli, Gramatan Travel New York, on the new path leading up to Downpatrick Cathedral from the St Patrick Centre.
For further information:
Elaine Moore/Clair Balmer Tourism Ireland
Tel: 028 7035 9260 Mob: 07766 527719
Notes to Editors:
• Tourism Ireland is the organisation responsible for promoting Northern Ireland and the island of Ireland overseas as a leading holiday destination.
• Tourism is responsible for in excess of 4.9% of GDP in Northern Ireland and supports approximately 40,000 jobs.
• Approximately 1.4 million overseas visitors came to Northern Ireland in 2010.
• Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.discoverireland.com; there are 45 different websites, providing information in 19 different languages covering every continent. In 2010 discoverireland.com attracted almost 12 million unique visitors.