Ireland’s Tourism Drive for 2013 Kicks off at World’s Largest Travel Fair

05 Nov 2012

Minister of State for Tourism and Sport Michael Ring joined Tourism Ireland and tourism enterprises from across the island of Ireland today, at World Travel Market (WTM) in London, heralding the start of the promotional drive for the 2013 season.

Now in its 33rd year, World Travel Market is the largest B2B event in the global travel and tourism calendar, with almost 50,000 representatives of the industry from around the world and 3,000 influential international media in attendance. According to the organisers of WTM, about £1.6 billion’s worth of business was transacted at the event last year. This year, 68 Irish tourism enterprises – including hotels, ferry companies, visitor attractions, coach hire companies, incoming tour operators, hostels and activity providers – are exhibiting at the Tourism Ireland stand, which provides an invaluable platform for the participating companies to network, negotiate and exchange vital contracts for 2013. 

With over 200 countries all vying for business at WTM this week, Tourism Ireland aims to stand out from the crowd and capture the attention of the influential global media and travel trade in attendance. The Gathering Ireland 2013, the biggest and most ambitious tourism-led event ever held in Ireland, will be the highlight of next year and there is a major focus on The Gathering on the Tourism Ireland stand at this year’s World Travel Market.

Speaking in London at WTM, Minister Michael Ring said: “This is one of the most important events for promoting Ireland to the global tourism trade. It’s a great opportunity to promote The Gathering Ireland and encourage more tourism operators to include Ireland in their itineraries as a destination. Although visitor numbers to Ireland from Europe and further afield are growing, the British market remains disappointing. That’s why I will be focusing on Britain in particular at the World Travel Market, and building on the new GB tourism strategy produced recently by the Irish tourism industry.”

Niall Gibbons, chief executive of Tourism Ireland, said: “The large representation of our industry partners on the Tourism Ireland stand at WTM this year is extremely welcome and essential in the highly competitive global marketplace.

“2012 has seen a welcome return to growth in visitors to Ireland from markets like North America – where we might be in for a record year in 2012 – Mainland Europe and long-haul markets. However, the British market is still proving difficult, with a slow and uncertain economic recovery and weak consumer confidence having a significant impact on outbound travel. But I am pleased to say that Tourism Ireland, working with Fáilte Ireland, the Northern Ireland Tourist Board and other key tourism players, has collaborated on a significant and exciting new strategy for GB. I am confident that this new plan – called ‘GB Path to Growth’ – will help us restore this all-important market to growth. 

“Right now, we are preparing for a very special year in 2013 with The Gathering Ireland, the biggest and most ambitious tourism-led event ever held in Ireland, which will provide fresh and compelling reasons for people in GB and across the world to visit. At the end of this month, we will outline our plans for 2013, when we will be pulling out all the stops to ensure that the island of Ireland increases its share of the global travel business.”

Niall Gibbons, Tourism Ireland CEO; Emma Allen, Mespil Hotel, Dublin; and Minister Michael Ring, on the Tourism Ireland stand at World Travel Market 2012 in London.


Further media information:
Sinéad Grace, Tourism Ireland  
t:  087 685 9027

Notes to Editors:


32CC/Irish Coaches/Hello Ireland Tours
Abbey Tours
Ashling Hotel
Atlantic Hospitality Services
Belfast Visitor & Convention Bureau
Best Western Ireland
Brennan Hotel Group
Camden Court Hotel
Carlton Hotel Galway
Carlton Hotel Group
Castle Leslie Estate
Castle Oaks House Hotel
Causeway Coast & Glens
Celtic Group Hostels
Choice Hotels Ireland
CIE Tours International
Croke Park Hotel & Conference Centre
Cronins Coaches Ltd
Culture & Heritage Tours
Culture Company 2013 (Derry~Londonderry UK City of Culture 2013)
Customer Survey Technologies International
Dalata Hotel Group
Derry Visitor & Convention Bureau
Destination Killarney
Dublin Bus Sightseeing Tours
Experience Gaelic Games
Extreme Ireland
Fermanagh Lakeland Tourism
Fitzpatrick Castle Hotel
Great National Hotels
Guinness Storehouse
Hilton Dublin Kilmainham
IHF South East Ltd
Irish Welcome Tours
Killarney Hotels Ltd
Killary Cruises & Liffey River Cruises
Killashee House Hotel
Knock Shrine Pilgrimages
Kylemore Abbey & Victorian Walled Garden
Lee Hotels, Mespil & Sligo Park Hotel
Manor House Hotels & Irish Country Hotels
M.B.A. & Ireland’s Choice
McWilliam Park Hotel
Moloney & Kelly Travel
Muckross Park Hotel
National Museums Northern Ireland
Paddywagon Tours
Prem Group Hotels
Railtours Ireland First Class
Regency Hotel Group
Select Hotels of Ireland
Shannon Ferries
Shannon Heritage
Sligo Park Hotel
South West Walks Ireland
SRC Hotels Ireland
Stena Line Ltd
Taylors Three Rock
Temple Bar Hotel
The g Hotel
The Merchant Hotel
The Morrison hotel
Tifco Hotels Ireland
Travelodge Ireland
Visit Dublin
Visit Waterford
Whites Hotel Group/Irish & English Tours



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