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Festival Focus for Autumn Campaign
-Promotional blitz targets potential holidaymakers around the globe-

A €19/£16.5 million autumn promotional drive is in full swing overseas to boost late-season travel from around the globe. The Tourism Ireland campaign is also building excitement around ‘The Gathering Ireland 2013’ and Derry~Londonderry UK City of Culture for next year. Up to 30% of overseas tourism business comes between September and December.

The campaign has been highlighting our rich programme of festivals and events – from the Dublin Festival Season to the Belfast Festival at Queens (celebrating its 50th anniversary), Wexford Festival Opera, Westport Food Festival, Cork Jazz Festival, the Galway International Oyster and Seafood Festival, the Banks of the Foyle Hallowe'en Carnival, and a whole lot more.

Attractive offers for city breaks and rural holidays are the key messages in Great Britain, the United States, Mainland Europe, Australia and emerging markets. TV, radio, print and online advertising, as well as extensive PR and social media activity, are spreading the word. Partners include air and sea carriers, tour operators and tourism businesses.

In Great Britain alone, the campaign will reach over 19 million potential holidaymakers this autumn, putting festivals, music, culture and food in the spotlight and showing the fun, friendliness and great things to do and see on a holiday or short break here.

Highlights include:

Great Britain
  • Attractive city break and car touring packages are at the centre of the autumn campaign in GB.
  • TV: Up to 19 million people will see the TV ads which include an invitation to visit for ‘The Gathering Ireland 2013’.
  • Radio: 2.7 million radio listeners are tuning in to a month-long promotion of the festivals, music and culture of Dublin and Belfast. A further 5 million are hearing ads for other Dublin and Cork events such as the Guinness Jazz Festival.
  • Cinema: about 1.25 million cinema-goers have seen our advertising around blockbuster films like Anna Karenina and The Sweeney.
  • Targeting the Diaspora: An estimated 6 million people in GB claim ancestral links with the island of Ireland. They are being targeted with advertising on relevant websites and in newspapers like the Irish World and the Irish Post.
  • Co-operation with carriers: a busy programme of co-operative campaigns with airlines and ferry operators is highlighting ease of access and great fares.
  • Promoting to the travel trade: influential GB coach and group tour operators have been invited by Tourism Ireland to workshops in Sligo and Belfast, to meet with representatives of the tourism industry here and plan their 2013 programmes.
  • ‘Team Ireland’ blitzes shopping centres: tourism partners and Tourism Ireland are blitzing consumers in Manchester and Bristol in shopping centre promotions to highlight great value breaks.
  • The Goodwood Revival: for the first time ever, car touring holidays were promoted at The Goodwood Revival, one of Britain’s largest vintage car festival events which attracts about 150,000 people.
  • Belfast Hits the High Notes: Tourism Ireland has teamed up with Van Morrison and EMI to showcase the fantastic music and arts scene of Belfast and to highlight this year’s Belfast Festival at Queens. The promotion is targeting music fans in key tourism markets including GB, the United States, Germany, France, the Netherlands and Spain. 
  • World Travel Market: About 60 tourism enterprises will join Tourism Ireland at this year’s World Travel Market (WTM) in November, with a major focus on ‘The Gathering Ireland 2013’ and Derry~Londonderry UK City of Culture 2013. 
North America:
  • TV: Building on the tremendous success of the recent Notre Dame v Navy game in Dublin, Tourism Ireland is running a high impact TV and online campaign with NBC in New York, Boston, Chicago and Philadelphia around Notre Dame’s autumn games. The campaign will reach 7.5 million viewers, highlighting ‘The Gathering Ireland 2013’.
  • Magazines and online: 4 million Americans will see full-page Ireland features in travel, thought leader and epicurean magazines, including The New Yorker, Condé Nast Traveler, Bon Appétit and AFAR. Millions more will also see our internet TV campaign on premium channels such as FOX, MSN, NBC, Bravo and History Channel, as well as on travel and cooking channels. Autumn travel offers will also appear on high profile sites such as Travelzoo, Sherman’s Travel, Fodors and New York Times Getaways, reminding potential holidaymakers about the great value airfares and vacation packages available.
  • Targeting the Diaspora: Radio, print and online ads are targeting 13.5 million Americans of Irish descent in Boston, Chicago, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco and Los Angeles.
  • ‘Enabler’ events promote ‘The Gathering’: Our ‘Gathering’ roadshow with Minister Varadkar has just finished in New York, Chicago, Boston and Toronto, which reached key ‘enablers’ such as business networks, clans, cultural and sporting associations, Irish clubs and societies to encourage them to participate in ‘The Gathering Ireland 2013’. 
  • Social media: a fun “How Irish are you?” competition on Tourism Ireland’s Facebook page is targeting the Diaspora with a series of fun questions for a chance to win a trip to the island of Ireland in 2013.
  • Publicity spotlight: Our strong programme of visits for influential travel and lifestyle journalists continues. One of the highlights will be Rudy Maxa’s World radio show (Rudy is one of America’s most popular travel experts), which will broadcast live back to over 150 stations across the US, focusing on autumn festivals and ‘The Gathering’.

Mainland Europe


  • Attractive fares and great reasons to visit are the focus of co-operative newspaper advertising and online campaigns with Aer Lingus and Ryanair, reaching over 10 million people in and around Munich, Frankfurt, Berlin and Aachen. City breaks are also featuring on national TV in conjunction with online travel agent Unister.
  • Travel media visits continue this autumn, including a crew from public TV broadcaster Saarländischer Rundfunk, who will record a 30-minute programme on Dublin.
  • Angling in Ireland will be promoted to about 500,000 readers of specialist fishing magazine Blinker; and on the fishing website
  • A four-page supplement about walking in Cork and Kerry will be circulated to 500,000 readers of Panorama, the magazine of Germany’s largest walking association.


  • City breaks in Dublin and Belfast will be promoted on key travel and lifestyle websites. City breaks in Cork will be promoted with leading online travel agent Opodo and through emarketing to 650,000 people. Great hotel offers are also being promoted through other top online travel agents, like VoyagePrivé.com (5 million subscribers) and ClubPrivé (almost 700,000 subscribers).
  • Over 2.3 million people living in and around Paris are seeing ads in Direct Matin, A Nous Paris and Metro, in a campaign with Aer Lingus promoting flights from Paris to Cork and Dublin.

Scandinavia, Italy and Spain:

  • Co-operative promotions with Aer Lingus in Scandinavia will highlight the new, daily Copenhagen to Dublin flight as well as the existing Stockholm to Dublin services.  A three-day sales blitz in Copenhagan, Oslo and Stockholm brought participating tourism partners face-to-face with hundreds of influential travel trade and media contacts.
  • Our rich literary heritage was promoted to the 100,000+ attendees at Gothenburg Book Fair, the second largest of its type in Europe.
  • In Italy and Spain, Tourism Ireland is targeting the EFL (learning English as a Foreign Language) sector, through email and SMS text marketing, as well as social media activity.

Australia and Developing Markets

  • Ten tourism partners from around the island of Ireland will join Tourism Ireland for a ten-day sales mission to Australia and New Zealand this November.
  • Also in November, the Melbourne Cup (Australia’s major horse race, known as “the race that stops a nation”) will have a special Dublin theme; sponsor Emirates has announced that its renowned Birdcage marquee will feature famous Dublin landmarks and Tourism Ireland is working with Emirates to capitalise on this promotion, highlighting Dublin and the island of Ireland to thousands of race-goers.
  • ‘The Gathering Ireland 2013’ is being highlighted during the visit of President Michael D Higgins to Chile, Brazil and Argentina this month.
  • ‘The Gathering’ and Derry~Londonderry UK City of Culture will also be promoted in China this autumn as part of our sales mission. Participants will meet with 60 top travel agents and tour operators as well as travel and lifestyle journalists in Beijing and Shanghai.



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