The Ireland rugby squad takes on Canada this weekend at Toronto’s BMO Field and Tourism Ireland will be pulling out all the stops to capitalise on the tourism potential of the game.
With plenty of exposure and ‘hype’ about Ireland in the media in Canada this week, the game is providing Tourism Ireland with an excellent opportunity to highlight Ireland as a wonderful vacation destination for Canadians, as well as a top location for sporting events. The organisation has put in place a busy programme of promotions, to capitalise on the tourism dividend of the game. Activity includes:
Ireland ads on TV, which will be seen by an estimated 200,000 Canadian rugby fans watching the game on The Sports Network (TSN);
highly visible sideline ads around the pitch at BMO Field, which will be seen by those watching on TV, as well as the 15,000 spectators at the game;
a promotional stand in the fan zone at the game tomorrow, highlighting the many things to see and do on a vacation in Ireland and featuring competitions with lots of great prizes;
Tourism Ireland also promoted Ireland at an event this week, with both rugby teams present. Members of the Diaspora living in Canada were in attendance – with Tourism Ireland encouraging those who are Irish born, Irish bred or Irish in spirit to come and visit in 2013 and join our great Gathering celebrations.
Jayne Shackleford, Tourism Ireland’s manager in Canada, said: “Tomorrow’s clash between Ireland and Canada is an excellent opportunity for us to highlight the island of Ireland in Canada as a great choice for a vacation this summer and we have put a busy promotional programme in place this week, to capitalise on the positive exposure. With so much happening this year for The Gathering and Derry~Londonderry UK City of Culture, our message is that Ireland is a fantastic destination and that there has never been a better time for Canadians to visit.”
The IRFU and Leinster Rugby are also doing their bit for The Gathering this year – with over 500 international players from 50 teams expected to ‘gather’ in UCD this August to compete in a special festival of rugby ‘Gathering’.
Michael Kearney, Ireland team manager (third left); Peter O’Mahony, captain of the Ireland rugby team (third right); Les Kiss, interim head coach; with Jonathan Sargeant (left), Jayne Shackleford and Tanya Warren (right), all Tourism Ireland, pictured at the BMO Field in Toronto ahead of this weekend’s Canada v Ireland rugby clash.
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, 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.