New research conducted by Europcar Ireland shows that for four out of very five tourists, visiting an Irish pub is an important part of their visit to the country, with 43% saying the warm and welcome atmosphere was the best part of the Irish pub experience. These are among key findings of Europcar Ireland’s 2017 Tourism Index, which shines light on tourist profiles and trends in Ireland.
Europcar's research found that 93% of tourists visit a pub while in Ireland, with 79% of those surveyed saying that visiting an Irish pub was an important part of their experience of Irish culture during their holiday. Meanwhile, 28% said they appreciated listening to traditional music in Irish pubs and 18% considered the taste of Irish Guinness to be the highlight of the pub experience in Ireland.
Europcar also found that the number of tourists staying in shared private accommodation like Airbnb experienced a surge over the last two years, with the percentage of tourists who said they chose to stay in private accommodation rising from 7% in 2015 to 23% in 2017.
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Furthermore, the research revealed that the number of Irish people taking a staycation as their main holiday for the year increased to 53% last year from 19% in 2016. Half of those who staycation in Ireland said they are doing so to discover new parts of the country, with Dublin being the most popular destination among one in five staycationers, followed by Galway (14%), Kerry (13%) and Cork (12%).
The survey found that 97% of tourists enjoyed exploring Ireland by car and the freedom it provided. 61% ranked roadside scenery as the biggest benefit of travelling around Ireland in a car, while 19% were taken by Ireland’s small, winding country roads.
Commenting on the results of the survey, Europcar Ireland managing director Colm Menton said, “We are delighted to launch the results of the third annual Europcar Ireland Tourism Index and share our insights into current tourist attitudes and trends in Ireland. 2017 was another great year for tourism in Ireland with an increase of 4.2% in overseas visitors to Ireland during the first half of last year compared to the same period in 2016 according to the CSO.
“Particularly significant last year was the rise in the number of Irish residents choosing to explore the country further with a staycation. It is very encouraging for those who service the tourism sector to see how much Ireland has to offer existing Irish nationals and residents, in addition to tourists visiting from abroad.”
© 2018 Hospitality Ireland – your source for the latest industry news. Article by Dave Simpson. Click subscribe to sign up for the Hospitality Ireland print edition.