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05 Sep 2018

Tourism Ireland welcomes +8.7% growth in overseas visitor spend and +11% growth in holiday visitors for H1 2018

Commenting on today’s CSO figures for the first half of 2018, Niall Gibbons, CEO of Tourism Ireland, said: “Today’s CSO figures are very strong, confirming that revenue from overseas visitors to Ireland grew by almost +9% in the first half of 2018, an additional €180 million for the Irish economy compared with the first six months in 2017. Total overseas visitors grew by +6.6%. Holiday visitor numbers grew by +11%; and revenue from holidaymakers grew by +12%. 

“Particularly welcome is the continued strong performance from North America, with an increase of +11.4% in visitors and almost +10% in revenue; and from Mainland Europe, with growth of almost +10% in visitors and +12.7% in revenue. This means that spending by visitors from North America and Mainland Europe to Ireland has outpaced British visitor spend in the first half of the year. Tourism Ireland’s market diversification strategy has prioritised North America and Mainland Europe as markets which offer a strong return on investment.

“I welcome the recovery from Britain, with visitor numbers up +2% and revenue up almost +1%. Next month, I will also lead another delegation of Irish tourism industry leaders to London for roundtable meetings with key players in the British travel trade. We will discuss how Tourism Ireland and the tourism industry can best respond to the challenges posed by Brexit as we plan for 2019 and beyond. Maintaining our competitiveness is critical, to continue to grow tourism from overseas.

Niall Gibbons continued: “Next week, we will announce Tourism Ireland’s extensive autumn campaign, to promote late season holidays and boost travel into the early part of 2019. On the back of an increasingly strong access picture, we are rolling out a really comprehensive promotional programme around the world. We are working in close co-operation with industry partners across the island of Ireland, as well as with a wide range of international tour operators and with major air and sea carriers. 

Notes To Editors