Leading travel agents from across the USA are taking part in a fact-finding visit to Northern Ireland this week, as guests of Tourism Ireland, American Airlines and Aer Lingus.
The travel agents – all representatives of top-producing American travel companies like Ensemble, Virtuoso and American Express – are experiencing some of Belfast’s top visitor attractions, including Titanic Belfast and the SS Nomadic, as well as a enjoying a tour of the city by bus. They are also visiting Blessingbourne Estate near Fivemiletown, Belle Isle Castle and Cookery School, Castle Coole, Belleek Pottery and enjoying a cruise on Lough Erne on the Lady of the Lake.
Alison Metcalfe, Tourism Ireland’s head of North America, said: “We are delighted that so many of these influential travel agents have taken the time out of their busy schedules to come and visit Northern Ireland. Familiarisation visits such as these are extremely important, as the travel agents get to experience at first-hand the wealth of things to see and do here for American holidaymakers. Our aim is to enthuse them about the destination and ensure that when they return home they are better equipped to advise their clients about Northern Ireland, when planning and booking their holidays."
Sinéad Murray, Tourism Ireland (second right), with some of the visiting American travel agents, in the grounds of Culloden Hotel, Cultra.
Notes To Editors
- Tourism Ireland is the organisation responsible for promoting Northern Ireland and the island of Ireland overseas as a leading holiday destination.
- Tourism is responsible for in excess of 5.2% of GDP in Northern Ireland and supports approximately 43,000 jobs.
- In 2014, we welcomed an estimated 1.8 million overseas visitors to Northern Ireland, delivering revenue of about £446 million.
- Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.Ireland.com, 29 market sites available in ten language versions around the world, which will attract more than 16 million visitors in 2015.