Commenting on figures published today by the CSO for overseas arrivals for January to August 2018, Niall Gibbons, CEO of Tourism Ireland, said: “Today’s figures from the CSO confirm that overseas visitor numbers increased by almost +8% during the January-August period – 520,500 additional overseas arrivals when compared with the first eight months of 2017. This was the best ever month of August for Irish tourism, with more than 1.2 million arrivals.
“Particularly welcome in today’s figures is the continued strong performance from North America, with an increase of +13.2%. A number of factors are working in our favour, including more airline seats than ever before, from more gateways across the US and Canada. We’ve also seen excellent results from Mainland Europe, up +10.5% on January-August last year, with particularly strong performances from Germany (+21%) and Italy (+13.4%). Tourism Ireland has prioritised North America and Mainland Europe, as markets which offer a strong return on investment, in terms of holiday visitors and expenditure.
“While we welcome the fact that arrivals from Britain are up almost +2.5%, it’s too early to say if this represents a turnaround in the long-term trend. The impact of Brexit on outbound travel from Britain, therefore, remains a concern.
“We are determined to ensure that tourism growth continues. Our aim is to grow overseas tourism revenue in 2018 to €6 billion, for the island of Ireland.”
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 more than 300,000 people across the island.
- In 2017, we welcomed 10.6 million overseas visitors to the island of Ireland, delivering revenue of €5.6 billion.
- Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.ireland.com, 29 market sites available in 11 language versions around the world, which attracted around 19.2 million visitors in 2017.