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26 Jan 2015

Targeting British coach and group tour business for Ireland

Thirteen Irish tourism enterprises travelled to London over the weekend, to join Tourism Ireland for ‘Excursions’, an annual group travel show which attracts about 1,300 influential coach and group tour operators from around Great Britain.

Visitors to the show included coach tour operators and group travel organisers, representing all types of clubs and associations around Britain – who are responsible for putting in place arrangements for holidays and excursions overseas for groups. The one-day show provided an ideal opportunity for the participating Irish companies to network and do business face-to-face with decision-makers from the important coach and group travel sector; the objective was to encourage them to introduce the island of Ireland to their programmes or brochures for 2015, or to extend the programmes in which Ireland already features.

Vanessa Markey, head of Tourism Ireland in Great Britain, said: “Great Britain is our largest tourism market and we were pleased to see visitor numbers increase by +8% for January to November 2014, an extra 214,000 British visitors compared with the same period in 2013. We are determined to ensure that tourism growth continues. Events like Excursions provide an excellent opportunity for us to raise awareness of the many things to see and do around the island of Ireland for British visitors – underpinned by a strong value message.

“As well as positioning the island of Ireland as a ‘must see’ destination among the influential group travel organisers in attendance, our presence at Excursions was a fantastic opportunity for us to continue to highlight the Wild Atlantic Way and Causeway Coastal Route, as well the exciting programme of events taking place across the island this year.”

Promoting the Wild Atlantic Way and the Causeway Coastal Route will continue to be a major focus of Tourism Ireland’s activity in Great Britain and elsewhere around the world in 2015; the organisation will also showcase the new Dublin Discovery Trail. This year marks 150 years since the birth of world-renowned Irish poet and Nobel laureate, WB Yeats; Tourism Ireland will promote Yeats 2015 – particularly to its ‘culturally curious’ audience. Tourism Ireland will also highlight ID2015, a showcase of the best of Irish design, raising the profile of Irish design and designers and showing how they reflect our unique culture, helping to give us ‘stand-out’ on the world stage.

  David McCoy, House of Waterford Crystal, and Debbie Moran, Tourism Ireland, at ‘Excursions’ travel show in London.

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 2014, we 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

23 Jan 2015

GMac swings into action for tourism