A major tourism blitz gets under way today to win more business from Germany, the world’s largest outbound travel market. Tourism Ireland and 35 Irish tourism companies are in Germany this week for a three-city travel mission – aiming to increase Ireland’s share of the valuable German holiday and business tourism market this year. Germany already delivers 416,000 visitors, worth an estimated €200 million in revenue each year to the economy.
The trade mission includes Frankfurt, Düsseldorf and Hamburg – each of which has direct air access to Ireland. One-to-one meetings, presentations and networking sessions will take place, involving nearly 250 top travel agents and tour operators. The Tourism Ireland delegation will be encouraging those influential German travel professionals to include the island of Ireland in their holiday programmes for 2012 and beyond. Given that travel agents and tour operators continue to be the main booking channel for German holidaymakers, a key element of Tourism Ireland’s strategy is to work with the travel trade – both online and offline – in Germany.
Niall Gibbons, chief executive of Tourism Ireland, said: “Germany is a priority market for Tourism Ireland. Over half the German population takes at least one holiday abroad each year, making Germany the world’s largest outbound travel market. Germany is the third-largest source of visitors to the island of Ireland and Tourism Ireland has an exceptionally strong promotional programme in the pipeline for 2012 in Germany, to raise the profile of Ireland as a wonderful destination and emphasising a strong value message. Those Germans interested in taking a holiday which involves sightseeing and local culture remain our core target; Tourism Ireland is also targeting consumers who engage in outdoor activities while on holidays.”
The German market performed well for tourism to the island of Ireland in 2011, with about 416,000 Germans visiting here, an increase of +8% on 2010. The average length of stay for German holidaymakers is 10 nights and they tend to travel to several different regions when they are here. Interest levels among Germans in visiting Ireland are high; they also tend to visit more than once, with 40% of Germans returning to Ireland for a second visit.
Niall Gibbons continued: “Key motivators for German travellers to Ireland include stunning scenery, Irish music and culture, as well as the friendliness of the people, our fun and humour; these are the messages that we will be communicating this week, during our travel trade mission, and throughout 2012.”
Further media information:
Sinéad Grace, Tourism Ireland
t: 087-685 9027
Notes to Editors:
• Tourism Ireland is the organisation responsible for promoting the island of Ireland overseas as a leading holiday destination.
• Tourism is the island of Ireland’s largest indigenous industry; responsible for in excess of 4% of GNP in the Republic of Ireland and employing approximately 200,000 people.
• In 2011, approximately 7.4 million overseas visitors came to the island of Ireland (+7% on 2010), delivering revenue of approximately €3.4 billion. Overseas tourism business accounts for 59% of all tourism revenue.
• Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.discoverireland.com; there are 42 different websites, providing information in 14 different languages covering every continent. In 2010 discoverireland.com attracted almost 12 million unique visitors.