Minister of State for Tourism and Sport, Brendan Griffin, is visiting London this week. Today (Tuesday, 8 August) he met with the Tourism Ireland team, where he was briefed on the organisation’s 2017 promotional programme and the possible implications on travel of the decision by the UK to leave the EU.
Great Britain is a vital market for tourism to the island of Ireland. It delivers 47% of all overseas visitors and around 30% of all overseas tourism revenue. Tourism Ireland is determined to defend its share of this most competitive market.
Minister Griffin said: “I was delighted to visit the Tourism Ireland office in London today and have an opportunity to meet with the excellent staff who continue to promote Ireland in a vital market. We discussed the decline in British visitors and explored options to make Ireland even more attractive to the potential UK visitor. Overall numbers of visitors to Ireland are up substantially and I want to help make sure that numbers from the UK increase too. Convenience, quality and the value for money message are more important than ever in Britain right now and together we are exploring ideas that will have a positive and noticeable impact.”
Julie Wakley, Tourism Ireland’s Head of Great Britain, said: “We were delighted to have the opportunity to brief Minister Griffin today on our 2017 programme of activity, including our expanded partnership programme with airlines, ferry operators and tour operators, which is communicating a strong price-led message to prospective British visitors. The decline in the value of sterling has made holidays and short breaks in Ireland more expensive, which is in turn impacting on travel from Britain, as evidenced in the latest CSO figures – which confirm a decline of -6.4% in British visitor numbers to Ireland for the first half of 2017. Therefore, competitiveness and the value for money message are more important than ever in Britain right now. Over the coming months, we will be rolling out an extensive programme of autumn activity, to boost business in the shoulder and off-peak season.”
Minister Brendan Griffin meets Julie Wakley, Tourism Ireland’s Head of Great Britain (front, centre), and the Tourism Ireland team in London.
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 281,000 people across the island.
- In 2016, we welcomed approximately 10.3 million overseas visitors to the island of Ireland, delivering revenue of about €5.3 billion.
- Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.ireland.com, 29 market sites available in 11 language versions around the world, which attracted 19.37 million visitors in 2016.