A group of leading tour operators from Germany visited Galway city and county last weekend, as part of a fact-finding trip to the west of Ireland. Carefully selected and invited here by Tourism Ireland, they were here to experience at first-hand some of the many things to see and do in Galway for German holidaymakers.
The journalists’ itinerary was designed by Fáilte Ireland. As well as a walking tour of Galway city, the tour operators also set sail from Woodquay for a cruise on the Corrib Princess and enjoyed dinner at Ard Bia at Nimmos restaurant at the Spanish Arch. They also visited Connemara, where they watched a sheepdog demonstration at the Joyce Country Sheepdogs farm in Clonbur, stopped off for a spot of lunch at the Blackberry Restaurant in Leenane and went hill walking at the Delphi Mountain Resort. They stayed at the Galway Bay Hotel in Salthill and at the Delphi Mountain Resort in Leenane.
Given that travel agents and tour operators continue to be the main booking channel for German holidaymakers, a key element of Tourism Ireland’s strategy is to work with the travel trade – both online and offline – in Germany, highlighting Galway and the west of Ireland as a ‘stand-out’ destination with those influential travel trade contacts.
Zoë Redmond, Tourism Ireland’s manager for Central Europe, said: “Tourism Ireland is delighted to bring these tour operators to Galway and to the west of Ireland, so they can experience for themselves the high standard of the tourism product on offer in this part of Ireland. Familiarisation visits such as this are extremely important, helping the tour operators to know what we have to potential German holidaymakers and to sell more effectively when they return home.
“Germany is the world’s largest outbound travel market and the third-largest source of visitors for the island of Ireland, delivering about 432,000 visitors last year. Tourism Ireland has an exceptionally strong promotional programme in place throughout 2012, highlighting compelling reasons to visit and emphasising the great value available.”