Senior managers from China’s largest online travel agency, Ctrip, are enjoying an action-packed visit to Ireland this week, as guests of Tourism Ireland and Fáilte Ireland. Ctrip – headquartered in Shanghai – has more than 250 million customers.
The aim of the visit is to showcase some of the many things to see and do in Ireland for Chinese visitors – and to encourage Ctrip to extend the Ireland content in the programmes they offer to the growing independent traveller sector in Shanghai and Beijing. Their itinerary includes Bunratty Castle, Birr Castle Gardens, the Book of Kells, the Guinness Storehouse and Kildare Village.
David Boyce, Tourism Ireland’s Head of Middle East, Asia and Emerging Markets, said: “We were delighted to invite these decision-makers from Ctrip to visit Ireland, to see for themselves the many things to see and do here that will appeal to their clients. Fact-finding visits like this are an important element of our overall programme of activity with the travel trade in China; our aim is to encourage them to expand the content of the Ireland programmes they offer.
“China is the largest outbound travel market in the world and one that Tourism Ireland is committed to growing over the coming years. In 2018, we welcomed an estimated 100,000 Chinese visitors to the island of Ireland. We are confident that we are in a strong position to grow this emerging travel market over the coming years.”
Tourism Ireland is undertaking a busy programme of publicity, digital and social media activity in China throughout 2019. The organisation also works closely with leading online travel agents and tour operators like Ctrip.
Senior managers from Ctrip at Kildare Village with tour guide Min Lin Siew (seventh right); James Kenny, Tourism Ireland (right); and Marlene Burke (third right) and Peter McMahon (left), both Fáilte 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 around 325,000 people across the island.
- In 2018, we welcomed around 11.2 million overseas visitors to the island of Ireland (+6% on 2017), delivering revenue of approximately €6.1 billion (+10%).
- Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.ireland.com, 29 market sites available in 11 language versions around the world, which attracted around 20+ million visitors in 2018.