Continued Positive News for Tourism –

Overseas Visitors up +6.4% January to September

Today’s figures from the CSO for overseas visitors to the Republic of Ireland confirm continued growth during the peak summer season, with an overall increase of +6.4% – or an additional 326,600 overseas visitors – during the January to September period. In fact, these figures for the first nine months show that we are having our best year ever from North America, Australia and New Zealand, France, Germany and Spain. And particularly welcome is today’s news that visitor numbers from GB grew by +9% for the July-September period alone.

  • North America: visitors from North America grew by +14.6% during the period January-September. Tourism Ireland believes we are on course to achieve our best year ever from the United States – even surpassing the previous best year of 2007; this year, we will welcome over one million American visitors, spending about US$1 billion.
  • Mainland Europe: visitors from Mainland Europe increased by +5.1%, January-September, with markets like Germany, Spain, the Nordics and Benelux performing particularly well. Europe continues to grow in relative importance and is now the number one source of holidaymakers for Ireland.
  • Great Britain: it is particularly encouraging to see a return to growth from Britain, with a 3.5% increase in visitors from that market, January-September, including growth of +9% for the peak summer months of July to September. Tourism Ireland is rolling out the “GB Path to Growth” plan this year, in conjunction with our industry partners, to boost travel from this market.
  • Australia and Developing Markets: ADM recorded growth of 13.7% for the January-September period, largely driven by Australia and New Zealand.

Welcoming today’s figures, Niall Gibbons, CEO of Tourism Ireland, said: “Today’s figures from the CSO for the high season months of July to September are very strong, showing growth from almost all of our markets around the world. We are seeing record growth this year from North America (+13.6% for the three-month period); and from our long-haul markets (+24.5%) – with Australia and New Zealand (+22.5%) in particular driving that growth. It is also really encouraging to see good growth in visitors from Great Britain for the summer months (+9%). Mainland Europe is also playing its part in growing tourism business from overseas this year, with good increases in particular from markets like Germany (+6.8%), Spain (+7.1%), the Nordic countries (12.7%) and Benelux (+11.7%).

“We have a really extensive programme in place between now and the end of the year, targeting late-season travellers around the world, to keep this momentum going. And the outlook for 2014 is also positive – with a major Aer Lingus expansion on transatlantic services next year, which will include new, year-round flights from San Francisco and Toronto; as well as the new Ryanair flights to Shannon from next April from France and Germany, just announced yesterday. We look forward to maximising the promotion of these new flights to continue to grow overseas tourism to Ireland.”


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