Tourism Ireland has won a gold award for marketing the island of Ireland at a travel awards ceremony in China.
The 2018 Chinese Tourist Welcome (CTW) Awards were presented at ITB China, a B2B travel exhibition in Shanghai. The awards, now in their 15th year, are organised by COTRI (China Outbound Tourism Research Institute), with winners being selected by a panel of Chinese and non-Chinese travel industry experts, who evaluate the entries from around 30 countries and territories worldwide in Asia, Europe, North America, the Caribbean and Africa.
Tourism Ireland beat off competition to claim the top place in the marketing category, with CityNorth Hotel & Conference Centre taking the bronze in the same category, for its ‘China Ready’ preparation for Chinese visitors.
In 2017, Ireland welcomed an estimated 70,000 Chinese visitors to its shores. Tourism Ireland aims to grow Chinese visitor numbers to 175,000 per year, by 2025 (+150% on 2017). Next month sees the commencement of two new flights to Dublin from Beijing and Hong Kong – direct flights, representing around 1,700 airline seats each week, for the first time ever from the Asia Pacific Region to Ireland.
Niall Gibbons, CEO of Tourism Ireland, said, “We are delighted to have won gold for marketing the island of Ireland here in China, at the 2018 CTW Awards. We are constantly looking at innovative and engaging ways of reaching Chinese travellers, to raise awareness of the island of Ireland and to ensure Ireland stands out from other destinations.
“China is the largest outbound travel market in the world and one that Tourism Ireland is committed to growing over the coming years. In 2017, we welcomed an estimated 70,000 Chinese visitors to the island of Ireland; the introduction of direct flights from Beijing and Hong Kong is a major game-changer and offers a real opportunity for us to build on this number. We are confident that we are in a strong position to grow this emerging travel market in 2018 and over the coming years.”
© 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.