About the United States Market
The United States is our most important source market for overseas revenue and our second-largest source market, after Great Britain, in terms of visitor numbers. In 2019, we welcomed 1.7 million visitors from the United States to the island of Ireland (-4% on 2018), who spent €1.6/£1.4 billion during their time here (-2%). US visitors tend to stay longer, spend more and tour extensively. In 2019, there were 1.67 million visitors from the United States to the Republic of Ireland (-4% on 2018), who spent €1.5 billion. There were 212,000 US visitors to Northern Ireland (-11% on 2018), who spent £61 million.
Tourism Ireland officially opened an office in San Franciso in May 2022. The western region of the United States is important for tourism to the island of Ireland. Holidaymakers from there represent one-fifth of all targeted US holidaymakers for Ireland. They are frequent travellers and more likely to stay longer (62% stay six+ nights vs 56% of other US visitors).
Why should you target the United States?
US travellers stay longer, spend more, tour extensively and are high users of premium products. 72% of US visitors to the island of Ireland are holidaymakers. On average, US holidaymakers stay on the island of Ireland for 8.5 nights and typically, they each spend €900/£783. The core focus of our strategy is to maximise Ireland’s capacity for conversion by targeting those consumers with greatest potential to travel in 2023 and beyond. By working together, and by targeting those markets with direct air access and high potential segments (FIT, luxury, diaspora, golf, outdoor activity and smaller groups) there are opportunities to convert what we expect to be significant pent-up demand for the island of Ireland as the recovery takes hold.
How to work with the United States market
Trade communications such as agent & operator webinars and sharing content for partners channels has increased in 2023 and is a great platform to share product updates and keep Ireland top of mind. Webinars include Tourism Ireland hosted as well as in partnership with premium retail consortia. The focus on virtual B2B platforms delivers valuable opportunities to connect with key operators and agents in the market. We look forward to working with you to provide sales facilitation opportunities for 2023 and beyond.
In addition to trade and operator activity we continue our focus on digital and publicity channels to seek out new opportunities to engage with trade and consumer media in the US. We welcome your product updates and content to help share stories from the island of Ireland in this space.
Ireland has an abundance of experiences that appeal strongly to US visitors. They are interested in exploring the island of Ireland by enjoying the beauty of the landscape. They also like to immerse themselves into the culture by meeting the locals and enjoying local specialities. Holidaymakers from the United States like to travel around and explore the regions of the island of Ireland. 47% of them hire a car and discover the island by self-driving.
Tourism Ireland is actively sharing content with our travel agent and tour operators in the US market on a regular basis keeping Ireland top of mind with inspirational and evergreen content. The content is packaged for operators to share on their own social media channels as well to inspire consumers to travel. Ancestry/Genealogy, Great Outdoors, Luxury and Castles content continue to resonate strongly.
Tourism Ireland’s evolving Trade Communications programme includes our Ireland Specialist Programme, our dedicated Trade Website, E-zines and Webinars to our database of 16K+ key US travel industry contacts. We will continue to provide timely and targeted information & news from Island of Ireland industry and US travel industry throughout 2023.
Please check the site on a regular basis, to find out what’s on offer and how you can be involved throughout the year. You can also register for email alerts for the latest information and upcoming opportunities. If you have any questions, drop us a line – we're here to help.
Further information about the United States
East coast sales mission, April 2023