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24 Aug 2017

Chinese, Indian and Australian travel agents eye up Northern Ireland

Travel agents compete to be ‘Emerald Ireland Specialist’

Eleven (11) top-performing travel agents from six different markets – including China, India, Australia, New Zealand, the GCC and South Africa – have been enjoying an action-packed visit around Northern Ireland.

Their visit is the ‘grand finale’ of Tourism Ireland’s ‘Ireland Specialists’ online training programme – which is designed for travel agents and tour operators in Australia and developing tourism markets, to help them sell holidays to Northern Ireland and the island of Ireland. The travel agents all study six different modules on the island of Ireland, completing each module with a fun quiz. Travel agents who got full marks for each module received a special gold ‘Ireland Specialists’ certificate – and the chance to travel to the island of Ireland.

Their itinerary, designed by Tourism NI, included a visit to the walled city of Derry, where they enjoyed a walking tour which took in the Guildhall and Tower Museum.

David Boyce, Tourism Ireland’s Head of Asia, Middle East and UK Inbound, said: “As a reward for excelling in their ‘Ireland Specialists’ training, we invited this group of travel agents to come and experience some of the many things to see and do in Northern Ireland and elsewhere on the island of Ireland. Familiarisation trips such as this are extremely important, as influential travel agents get to experience at first-hand our superb tourism offering; our aim is to enthuse the travel agents about the destination, so that when they return home they will be even better informed to advise their clients when planning and booking their holidays.”
  Karen Henderson, Visit Derry (back, left); Ruth Murray, Tourism Ireland (back, second left); Garvan Kerr, City Walking Tours (back, fifth left); and Mark Rodgers, Dalriada Kingdom Tours (back, centre), with travel agents from China, India, Australia, New Zealand, the GCC and South Africa, outside the Guildhall in Londonderry.

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 61,300 jobs.
  • In 2016, we welcomed a record 2.1 million overseas visitors to Northern Ireland, delivering revenue of over £543 million.
  • Tourism Ireland’s international website is, 29 market sites available in 11 language versions around the world, which attracted about 19.37 million visitors in 2016.

Previous Press Release

23 Aug 2017

Chinese tourists set sail for Northern Ireland