Co Offaly played host to a group of leading tour operators from Germany last weekend. Carefully selected and invited here by Tourism Ireland in Germany, their itinerary was designed by Fáilte Ireland.
During their fact-finding visit here, the tour operators had a chance to experience at first-hand some of the extensive and varied range of activities which Co Offaly has to offer potential holidaymakers from Germany ¬– including a cruise on the Shannon with Silver Line Cruisers, starting at Banagher.
Barbara Wood, Tourism Ireland Germany, said: “We are delighted these influential tour operators have taken the time to come to Offaly to see what we have to offer at first-hand. Familiarisation visits such as these are extremely important as they help build awareness of Offaly and the wonderful cruising product of the River Shannon – as well as our spectacular scenery and the wealth of historic attractions to be found in this part of Ireland. The aim is that when these tour operators return to Germany they are better equipped to advise their clients on future travel plans and holiday bookings.”
Germany is the world’s largest outbound travel market and the third largest source of visitors for the island of Ireland. Tourism Ireland has increased its investment in the German market this year. Promotional activity includes a national TV advertising campaign for the first time ever and a significantly expanded publicity programme which highlights Ireland as the island of ‘unique character and characters’.
German tour operators on board the Silver Line Cruiser in Banagher, with Ulrike Rohrbacher, Tourism Ireland (second from right).
Sinéad Grace, Tourism Ireland t: 01 476 3493/ 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.
• Approximately 7.5 million overseas visitors came to the island of Ireland in 2009, delivering revenue of €3.5 billion.
• Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.discoverireland.com; there are 41 different websites, providing information in 19 different languages covering every continent. In 2009 discoverireland.com attracted a record 13+ million unique visitors, a +34% increase in visits on 2008.