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17 Oct 2014

Influential UK tour operators pay a visit to Ireland

Tourism Ireland invited a group of top UK inbound tour operators on a fact-finding visit of Ireland this week, in advance of attending a B2B workshop with Irish tourism enterprises in Dublin.

The aim of the tour operators’ visit – organised in conjunction with Fáilte Ireland – was to help grow Ireland’s share of the huge, worldwide tourism market, with a particular focus on increasing business from new and emerging tourism markets like China, Brazil and Russia. The group visited top attractions like the Little Museum of Dublin, Glasnevin Cemetery and Museum and the Guinness Storehouse, before continuing to the West of Ireland, where they visited Galway city and the Cliffs of Moher.

Jim Paul, Tourism Ireland’s head of Australia and developing markets, said:

“The majority of our overseas visitors come from the core 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 long-term opportunities presented by ‘new’ tourism markets, which we believe will play an increasing role in the future of the travel and tourism industry. It is therefore crucial that influential operators working in these markets get to experience Ireland, and the high standard of our tourism offering, at first-hand."

UK inbound tour operators with Harri Grunitz (left) and Elizaveta Gorbunova (second left), both Tourism Ireland; and tour guide Siobhán McDonald (third left), at the Cliffs of Moher.

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 2013, we welcomed an estimated 8 million overseas visitors to the island of Ireland, delivering revenue of almost €4 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.