As part of its push to grow conference and business tourism from the all-important US market, Tourism Ireland, together with Cork Convention Bureau, attended AIBTM (the Americas Incentive, Business Travel & Meetings exhibition) 2013 in Chicago, targeting decision-makers and senior representatives of companies involved in organising large-scale international conferences and events.
Alison Metcalfe, Tourism Ireland’s head of North America, said: “An exhibition like AIBTM provides us with a wonderful platform to spread the word about the superb meetings and conference facilities available in Cork, and right around the island of Ireland, and to highlight what makes the island of Ireland unique as a business destination, to key decision-makers working in that sector in the United States.
“Our presence at AIBTM was also an excellent opportunity to highlight the fantastic programme of events taking place during this special year of The Gathering Ireland. Tourism Ireland has an extensive programme of promotions under way in United States, and elsewhere around the world, to highlight The Gathering. As well as directly targeting the Diaspora and those with a connection to Ireland, we are also working closely with decision-makers involved in the MICE (meetings, incentive, conferences and events) industry, to enthuse them about the destination and encourage them to include the island of Ireland in their 2013 programmes.”
Business tourism is the most lucrative form of tourism, with visitors travelling here for business purposes spending about 2.5 times more than the average visitor.
Evelyn O’Sullivan, Cork Convention Bureau, meeting with a buyer at AIBTM in Chicago.
Further media information:
Jasmine O’Brien, Tourism Ireland
Tel: 01-476 3425
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 2012, an estimated 7.27 million overseas visitors came to the island of Ireland, delivering revenue of approximately €3.51 billion. Overseas tourism business accounts for 59% of all tourism revenue.
• Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.ireland.com, currently rolling out in 11 different language versions for over 30 individual markets around the world.
• ‘The Gathering Ireland 2013’ is Ireland’s biggest ever tourism initiative, consisting of a year-long programme of festivals, events and gatherings in every part of the country; Tourism Ireland has an extensive programme of promotions under way to highlight ‘The Gathering Ireland 2013’ around the world, working closely with the ‘Gathering’ project team.