Four travel agents from the Netherlands visited the Causeway Coast, as part of a fact-finding trip to Northern Ireland.
Each person in the group had completed Tourism Ireland’s online training programme for Dutch travel agents and had taken part in an online ‘quiz’ about Northern Ireland, to be in with a chance to take part in the trip. The programme and quiz are designed to inform and educate the travel agents about all that Northern Ireland has to offer their clients for holidays and short breaks here. Over 200 travel agents in the Netherlands entered the online competition – with four lucky winners getting the chance to come here and experience the destination for themselves.
During their four-day visit, the group followed an itinerary devised by the Northern Ireland Tourist Board – which included a visit to Belfast and the spectacular drive along the Causeway Coastal Route, including stops at Ballygally, the Giant’s Causeway, Dunluce Castle and the village of Castlerock. They also enjoyed a walking tour of the walled city of Derry and cycled along part of the scenic North Coast.
Aileen Hickey, Tourism Ireland’s manager in the Netherlands, said:“As a reward for completing their online training and winning our competition, this group of travel agents got to visit some of the most popular attractions of Northern Ireland. We are delighted to have offered them the opportunity to come and visit the North Coast and Northern Ireland. Familiarisation trips such as this are an important element of our ongoing programme of activity with the influential travel trade in the Netherlands – with the travel agents getting to experience at first-hand the superb tourism product on offer in Northern Ireland. Our aim is that when they return home, the travel agents will be better equipped to advise their clients when planning and booking their holidays.”
Tourism Ireland uses e-learning training programmes in many of its key markets, as an effective way of targeting the influential travel trade with relevant information about Northern Ireland.
Enjoying the view at Dunluce Castle are Aisling Murphy, Tourism Ireland; Lea Slikker, de Jong Intra Vakanties; Monique Vokkert, The Travel Club; Aidan Maguire, Northern Ireland Tours; Rene Sijne, Personal Touch Travel; and Jessica Bos, SRC Cultuur Vakanties.
Further media information:
Elaine Moore/Clair Balmer, Tourism Ireland
Tel: 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.
• In 2012, 1.55 million overseas visitors came to Northern Ireland, delivering revenue of £418 million.
• Tourism Ireland’s international website is ireland.com, which is rolling out in 11 different language versions for 30+ markets around the world this year.