French Connection for Ireland

07 Oct 2013

Seven tourism enterprises joined Tourism Ireland in Paris recently, for this year’s IFTM (International French Travel Market).

IFTM is the largest travel trade exhibition in France, attracting almost 30,000 visitors each year including influential tour operators and travel agents, as well as business tourism decision-makers and leading French travel media. The event provided a wonderful platform for the participating Irish tourism companies to meet with, and sell directly to, the influential French travel trade.

It was also a fantastic opportunity for Tourism Ireland to launch The Wild Atlantic Way – or La Côte Sauvage d’Irlande – to the travel agents and tour operators attending the show. The Wild Atlantic Way is Ireland’s first long-distance touring route stretching all the way from Donegal to Cork. The route itself will comprise of a central spine, together with a series of loops and spurs off it to encourage people to explore all that the west coast has to offer.

Monica MacLaverty, Tourism Ireland’s manager for Southern Europe, said: “IFTM was a wonderful opportunity for us to unveil The Wild Atlantic Way to our top travel trade contacts here in France. We believe this exciting new tourism experience has great potential in the French market, where the west coast of Ireland is already so popular.

“Promotions like IFTM, where we talk directly to members of the French travel trade, provide us with an excellent opportunity to spread the word about the many great things to see and do on holiday in Ireland. France is an important market for tourism to the island of Ireland and Tourism Ireland has a busy promotional programme in place this autumn, showcasing the island of Ireland as a fantastic holiday destination.”

France is one of Ireland’s ‘top four’ markets for overseas tourism, delivering 404,000 visitors to the island of Ireland last year.

Rónán Ó Siochrú, Hidden Ireland Tours and representing the Wild Atlantic Way, with French travel agent Pierre Raymond, at IFTM in Paris.


Further media information:
Sinéad Grace, Tourism Ireland         
Tel: 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 2012, 7.4 million overseas visitors came to the island of Ireland, delivering revenue of €3.51 billion. Overseas tourism business accounts for 59% of all tourism revenue.
• Tourism Ireland’s international website is, 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 had an extensive programme of promotions under way to highlight The Gathering Ireland 2013 around the world, working closely with the ‘Gathering’ project team.



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