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04 Apr 2022

Major German travel conference comes to Killarney

200 top German travel professionals and journalists set to attend DER Touristik’s annual travel academy

Some 200 German travel professionals will descend on Killarney from this weekend, to attend a major travel conference. DER Touristik, a leading German tour operator, is hosting its prestigious annual travel academy in Killarney. The event is being supported by Tourism Ireland, Fáilte Ireland and Limerick Travel.

The travel academy is taking place over three days, on 3-6 April. It is always held in leading destinations and Killarney beat off rival bids from a number of other top destinations to host the 2022 event. 

Following a devastating two years for the tourism industry, the DER Touristik travel academy taking place in Killarney is another important step in restarting tourism from Germany to Ireland. As well as generating valuable off-season business, giving the local economy a significant boost before the high season, the travel academy always helps boost German visitor numbers to the host destination in subsequent years.

Niall Gibbons, Chief Executive of Tourism Ireland, said: “We are delighted to welcome the 2022 DER Touristik travel academy to Killarney and Ireland this week. As we restart tourism from Germany, Tourism Ireland, together with Fáilte Ireland and Limerick Travel, is really pleased to have played its part in securing this prestigious event – which confirms Killarney and Ireland as a world-class destination. With around 200 German travel professionals and journalists in attendance, it’s a fantastic opportunity to showcase what’s on offer here. It will help increase German visitor numbers to the South-West and Ireland, in 2022 and beyond. Our message is that Ireland is open for business again and we cannot wait to welcome back our German visitors.”

Paul Kelly, Chief Executive of Fáilte Ireland, said: “For Irish tourism to recover and grow in the long term it is imperative that there is a strong message that Ireland offers high-quality, diverse tourism experiences and a wide selection of great accommodation choices. Fáilte Ireland, together with local authority, state body and industry partners, have invested in Ireland’s offering to create a broad range of high-quality visitor experiences across accommodation, attractions, activities and festivals. By hosting these influential agents and journalists from our highly valued German market, and ensuring they experience what sets Ireland apart as a destination, we can continue to ensure that they can confidently encourage their customers to choose Ireland as a holiday destination.”

Kevin Keogh, DER Touristik’s Senior Vice President Sales and Marketing, said: “We are delighted to hold our 2022 Travel Academy in Ireland and very thankful to Fáilte Ireland, Tourism Ireland and all of our travel industry partners in Ireland for the great support. By staging our event now and inviting the top German travel agents to attend, we shall be able to reactivate past customers and generate new ones for all of Ireland.”

Around 200 top German travel agents, as well as influential travel journalists and senior managers from DER Touristik, are participating in this week’s travel academy. As well as attending the travel academy, delegates had the opportunity to participate in specially designed pre-conference tours across the island of Ireland – to enhance their knowledge of the tourism experiences and attractions on offer here and allow them to sample our legendary hospitality and welcome. 

Germany is our third-largest source of visitors and in 2019 we welcomed 749,000 German visitors to the island of Ireland. German travel agents in Killarney with (front, l-r) Kevin Keogh, DER Touristik; Paul Mockler, Fáilte Ireland; Mark Tanz, DER Touristik; Niall Gibbons, Nadine Lehmann and Siobhan McManamy, all Tourism Ireland, at the 2022 DER Touristik Travel Academy.

Notes To Editors

  • Tourism Ireland is the organisation responsible for promoting the island of Ireland overseas as a leading holiday destination.
  • In 2019, we welcomed 11.3 million overseas visitors to the island of Ireland, delivering revenue of over €5.9 billion.
  • Tourism Ireland’s international website is, 33 market sites available in 30 different countries in 11 language versions around the world.