Figures issued by the CSO today show that overseas visitor numbers to Ireland have increased by +8.8% for the September-November period. Niall Gibbons, CEO of Tourism Ireland, welcomed the figures, saying:“Today’s figures from the CSO for the September to November period – showing growth of +8.8% over the same period in 2012 – are very strong. I delighted to see growth from all of our markets around the world. And I am particularly pleased to see a good return to growth in British visitor numbers (+9% for the three-month period). We are seeing record growth this year from North America (+7% up to the end of October); and from our long-haul markets (+27%), with Australia and New Zealand in particular driving that growth. Mainland Europe is also playing its part in growing tourism business from overseas this year (+6.6%); in fact, 2013 will also be the best year ever for visitors from Germany, France and Spain.”
At the beginning of this month, Tourism Ireland launched its marketing plans to promote Ireland in 2014 and beyond, with ambitious targets to welcome 8.9 million visitors per year by 2016, including almost 4.3 million holidaymakers (+16% over 2013). Commenting on the plans for the next three years, Niall Gibbons said: “Following a successful 2013, ambitious targets have been set for 2014-2016. Next year, we will place a major focus on promoting the Wild Atlantic Way, as well as on major events like Limerick City of Culture, the ‘Grande Partenza’ of the Giro d’Italia and the Croke Park Classic, when the University of Central Florida takes on Penn State in their college football season opener. We will also build on the legacy of The Gathering, continuing to reach out to the Diaspora across the world.”
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 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 had an extensive programme of promotions under way to highlight ‘The Gathering Ireland 2013’ around the world, working closely with the ‘Gathering’ project team.