A group of top Australian travel agents has been taking part in a five-day, fact-finding visit of the island of Ireland. Invited here by Tourism Ireland in Sydney and Etihad Airways, the group’s itinerary was designed by Fáilte Ireland and Tourism NI.
The travel agents are here to experience at first-hand what Ireland has to offer Australian holidaymakers. The aim is to educate and enthuse them about Ireland – so they are better equipped to sell the destination to their clients when they return home. The visit is also a wonderful opportunity to remind the travel agents about the excellent connectivity between Australia and Ireland – with Etihad via Abu Dhabi.
The travel agents’ packed programme includes Dublin and attractions like EPIC Ireland and the Guinness Storehouse; Northern Ireland and visits to Titanic Belfast, The Gobbins Cliff Path and the Giant’s Causeway; and Ireland’s Ancient East, including Kilkenny Castle, Smithwick’s Experience Kilkenny and the Irish National Stud in Kildare.
In 2015, we welcomed about 207,600 visitors from Australia and New Zealand to Ireland, up +9% on 2014.
Sofia Hansson, Tourism Ireland’s Manager Australia and New Zealand said; “We are delighted to have the opportunity to showcase the island of Ireland to this group of Australian travel agents. Working with key partners like Etihad, as well as with the travel trade in Australia, is an important part of our annual promotional activity, to boost travel to the island of Ireland in 2016.
“2015 was another record-breaking year for visitor numbers to Ireland from Australia and New Zealand. Tourism Ireland is undertaking an extensive programme of promotions throughout 2016, to keep the momentum going and build on that growth.”
Australian travel agents with Fiona Clelland, Tourism Ireland (second right), enjoying a walking tour of Kilkenny.
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 220,000 people.
- In 2015, we welcomed approximately 9.3 million overseas visitors to the island of Ireland, delivering revenue of about €4.7 billion.
- Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.ireland.com, 29 market sites available in ten language versions around the world, which attracted about 16.5 million visitors in 2015.