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27 Jan 2014

The Russians are coming

Russian tour operators visit Ireland

Twelve leading tour operators from Russia have been travelling around the island of Ireland over the past week. Their visit was organised by UK inbound tour operator, Camelot Tours, and supported by Tourism Ireland – to help grow Ireland’s share of the rapidly-growing Russian travel market.

During their time in Ireland, the group got to experience at first-hand some of the many things to see and do here for Russian holidaymakers – including St Patrick’s Cathedral and the Guinness Storehouse in Dublin, as well as other iconic tourist sites like the Rock of Cashel, Blarney Castle, Muckross House, Gallarus Oratory, Bunratty Castle, the Cliffs of Moher and Galway.

Jim Paul, Tourism Ireland’s head of developing markets, said: “We are delighted that these influential Russian tour operators have taken time out of their busy schedules to come and visit Ireland. For all of them, it was their first visit and they were extremely impressed by the spectacular scenery and rich heritage, the many things to see and do, as well as by the hospitality and friendliness of the people they met. Familiarisation visits such as these are extremely important, as they help to showcase what’s on offer in Ireland for potential holidaymakers from Russia.

“The majority of our overseas visitors come from the core tourism markets of Great Britain, North America and Mainland Europe and, while this will continue, it is important that we expand our focus beyond these markets and look to the longer-term opportunities presented by Russia and the other BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India and China) countries. Familiarisation trips such as this are very important, as they enthuse the travel agents and tour operators about Ireland and help them to sell the destination more effectively when they return home.”

The Russian economy is growing fast and travel is showing similar growth, with over 35 million visits outside of Russia taken each year. Tourism Ireland believes this market could play an important part in helping to grow overseas tourism to the island of Ireland in the coming years; the organisation has representation in Russia for the first time ever in 2014.  


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.
  • By the end of 2014, we will have welcomed an estimated 8.6 million overseas visitors to the island of Ireland, delivering revenue of about €4.26 billion. Overseas tourism business accounts for 59% of all tourism revenue.
  • Tourism Ireland’s international website is, available in ten different language versions for over 30 individual markets around the world.


Previous Press Release

24 Jan 2014

Ireland is ‘the business’ in Paris