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28 Oct 2016

Ciao Belfast! New promotion targets 2 million Italians for holidays in Belfast

Some 1.3 million commuters in Milan will be seeing eye-catching ads for Belfast over the coming weeks, in metro stations across the city.

Tourism Ireland has teamed up with Visit Belfast for a joint promotional campaign, which kicks off today. The campaign aims to raise awareness of Belfast as a fantastic city break destination and to drive sales of the new Ryanair flight from Milan Bergamo to Belfast.

As well as the metro ads, the campaign also includes advertising on Facebook and email marketing, which will reach over 700,000 prospective visitors in northern Italy. Tourism Ireland will also spread the word through its strong community of Italian fans and followers on Facebook (about 220,000 fans), Twitter (almost 10,000 followers) and Instagram (almost 8,000 followers).

Tourism Ireland is also working with Ryanair on a separate radio and online campaign in northern Italy – highlighting ease of access to Northern Ireland, with an attractive airfare to tempt Italian travellers.

In 2015, we welcomed about 22,000 Italian visitors to Northern Ireland, up +2% on 2014. Niamh Kinsella, Tourism Ireland’s Manager in Italy, said: “We’ve been undertaking an extensive programme of promotions throughout 2016, to grow Italian visitor numbers to Northern Ireland. This co-operative campaign with Visit Belfast is an important element of that programme, to boost travel to Belfast and Northern Ireland during the autumn months. As an island, the importance of convenient, direct, non-stop flights cannot be overstated – they are absolutely critical to achieving growth in inbound tourism. Tourism Ireland is committed to working with Ryanair, Visit Belfast, Belfast International Airport and other tourism partners, through co-operative marketing, to drive demand for this flight, as well as working with other carriers and partners to promote and help maintain vital routes and services to Northern Ireland.”

  Ad highlighting Belfast in Milan metro station.

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 2015, we welcomed over 2 million overseas visitors to Northern Ireland, delivering revenue of about £454 million.
  • Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.ireland.com, 29 market sites available in 11 language versions around the world, which attracted more than 16.6 million visitors in 2015.