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22 Jan 2015

Tourism Ireland welcomes growth of +11% in overseas holidaymakers to Northern Ireland for January-September 2014

Strong growth of +12% in GB holidaymakers for first nine months of 2014

Welcoming the figures for overseas visitors to Northern Ireland for the first nine months of 2014, issued by NISRA today, Niall Gibbons, CEO of Tourism Ireland, said: “Figures published by NISRA today show that overseas visitors to Northern Ireland increased by +3% for the January to September period last year and overseas holidaymakers increased by +11%, compared with the same nine-month period in 2013. I am particularly pleased to see growth of +12% in GB holidaymakers. Visitor numbers from North America for the first nine months of 2014 are also very encouraging – +23% in all North American visitors and +21% in holidaymakers.”

Niall Gibbons continued: “Throughout 2014, Tourism Ireland undertook a packed programme of promotions, to bring Northern Ireland to the attention of people everywhere. A major focus of our activity in the early part of the year was on highlighting the Grande Partenza of the Giro d’Italia. We also joined forces with Game of Thrones creators HBO, on a ground-breaking advertising and social media campaign, leveraging the incredible success of the hugely popular TV series and its strong associations with Northern Ireland. In addition, thousands of opportunities were created for potential visitors around the world to read, hear or watch positive messages about Northern Ireland; Tourism Ireland estimates that this media exposure is worth an estimated £82 million in equivalent advertising value.”

Tourism Ireland’s targets for 2015 will see Northern Ireland welcome almost 1.9 million visitors, representing growth of +6% over 2014. Commenting on the year ahead, Niall Gibbons said: “Following a successful 2014, ambitious targets have been set for 2015. We will continue to highlight iconic experiences all over Northern Ireland – including Titanic Belfast, the Giant’s Causeway and our unique National Trust properties. The Causeway Coastal Route, and driving holidays to Northern Ireland, will also be promoted widely. Over the coming months, we will working hard to maximise the tourism potential of the Irish Open at Royal County Down, highlighting Northern Ireland as a top golf destination. We will continue to target people of Ulster-Scots descent; and to promote Northern Ireland; and we will highlight the new British-Irish Visa Scheme in China and India, which will enable Chinese and Indian visitors to visit both Ireland and the UK, including Northern Ireland, on a single visa of either country.”


Notes To Editors

  Total - All Market Great Britain North America Mainland Europe Other Areas
Summary Performance: January-September 2014 v January-September 2013
Total O/S Visitors +3% +0% +23% +5% +2%
Holiday Visitors +11% +12% +21% +4% +4%