IHF Reacts To Figures Showing Drop In Tourism From Key Markets

By Dave Simpson
IHF Reacts To Figures Showing Drop In Tourism From Key Markets

Commenting on tourism figures from Fáilte Ireland showing decreases in visitors from key overseas markets in 2022 versus 2019, the Irish Hotels Federation (IHF) has expressed concerns that a potential increase in tourism VAT would further undermine a recovery in Irish tourism.


According to the IHF, the Fáilte Ireland figures show the following passenger arrival statistics for 2022, when compared to 2019:

  • Great Britain: down 21%
  • North America: down 20%
  • Mainland Europe: down 8%

Statement By IHF President

IHF president Denyse Campbell said, “With Fáilte Ireland reporting that our largest tourism market, Great Britain, was down 21% last year, compared with 2019, what possible justification can there be for the government to increase Ireland’s tourism VAT rate, making it the third highest in Europe?

“A tourism VAT rate of 13.5% would undermine our competitiveness and result in people paying an additional €400 million more in taxes each year, on everything from the price of a cup of coffee to the price of a meal out, a stay in a hotel and the cost of a wedding. That’s a 50% increase in consumer taxes for Irish tourism services during a cost-of-living crisis, when both Irish consumers and overseas visitors are under enormous financial pressure.

“Hoteliers and tourism operators are particularly concerned about the UK market for 2023 and beyond, with the country facing a bleak economic outlook, with inflation hitting a four-decade high and the country heading into a prolonged economic slowdown and possible recession.


“Our main focus should be on securing the recovery over the next 12 months – doing everything we can to safeguard livelihoods and the long-term prospects for our industry. We should do nothing to put the recovery in tourism at risk and are urging the government to retain the 9% VAT rate.”

Read More: Fáilte Ireland Unveils 2023 Plans To Help Drive Sustainable Recovery Of Tourism

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