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Mainland Europe markets

2016 was a record year for overseas visitors from Mainland Europe to the island of Ireland.

Mainland Europe is now the largest single source of holidaymakers and revenue for the island of Ireland. We estimate that in 2016, Mainland Europe delivered +34% (€1.8 bn) of all overseas tourism revenue and approximately a third of all overseas visitors (3.3 million).  

Tourism Ireland promotes the island of Ireland in nine Mainland European markets - Germany, France, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, the Nordic region, Belgium, Austria and Switzerland. 

Recent results from the Central Statistics Office (CSO) confirm that visitor revenue from Mainland Europe to Ireland grew by +6% in 2016 to €1.6 billion – delivering an additional €98 million to the economy when compared to 2015.  Visitors from Mainland Europe grew by +7% to over 3 million – an additional 214,000 visitors when compared to the previous year. 

Results for the first nine months of 2016 from the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (NISRA)  suggest that visitor revenue from Mainland Europe to Northern Ireland increased by +11% to £80 million when compared to the same period in 2015 and Mainland European visitors to Northern Ireland grew by +14% to over 270,000 during the same period.  

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