More US Tourists Set to Touchdown in Ireland
Published on Jun 23 2014 11:45 AM in General Industry
This year is set to be another record year for tourism to Ireland from the United States. A number of factors are contributing to the growth, including improved economic conditions in the US and The Croke Park Classic, which takes place on 30 August. This event will be a huge boost, as more than 15,000 Americans are set to travel here for the highly-anticipated American college football game between Pennsylvania State University and the University of Central Florida. Tourism Ireland is taking every opportunity to maximise the tourism benefits of the game for Dublin and Ireland, with ads running on ESPN in the run-up to the game.
A briefing on Friday by Tourism Ireland on the US tourism market was attended by the Chargé d’affaires of the US Embassy in Ireland, as well as senior players from the airline sector and the Irish tourism industry. 2013 was a record year for tourism to Ireland from the United States, more than one million Americans visited and spent about US$1 billion. Tourism Ireland aims to keep the momentum going and build on that growth, targeting a growth of 8% in total American visitor numbers to Ireland this year.
Niall Gibbons, Tourism Ireland’s CEO, said: “The United States continues to be one of the strongest markets for tourism to the island of Ireland. 2013 was a record year for American visitors to Ireland – even surpassing our previous best year of 2007. We are determined to ensure the success continues. Tourism Ireland has an extensive programme of promotions under way throughout 2014, to keep the momentum going and build on that growth.” Another critical factor which will contribute to growth is the increase in the number of airline seats between the US and Ireland this summer, with around 14% more seats available. Given that American visitors stay longer and spend more than the average tourist, the US is a very important market for tourism to the island of Ireland. Tourism Ireland’s programme of activity includes an increased focus on digital marketing, heightened priorities on promoting shoulder month travel and a number of new initiatives targeting a younger American traveller.