Survey Reveals Upturn in Irish Tourism :: 'The Gathering' A Positive Factor

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22nd October 2013 12:22 - Sport, Leisure and Tourism

According to a barometer by Fáilte Ireland, the National Tourism Development Authority, business sentiment in the tourism industry is up a fifth (20%) in 2013 from the previous year. Respondents also noted that visitor volumes had significantly increased among hotels (68%), guesthouses (58%) and restaurants (58%).

The self-catering sector has also enjoyed an excellent year, with about half (52%) of operators reporting increased visitors and about a third (31%) reporting the same level. The sector has also benefited significantly from the fine weather this summer, and repeat visitors have also played a part, with the vast majority (89%) stating this as a positive factor this year.

Hostels, golf clubs and caravan & campsites are also enjoying a successful year for tourism. Caravan & campsites have benefited significantly from the weather, with two in three (67%) reporting increased visitor levels, and all the respondents (100%) in the sector stating the weather as a positive factor.

Overall, one in three (33%) respondents say they have experienced increased business from The Gathering – a year-long celebration of all things Irish – and about one in ten (9%) still expected it. Hotels appear to have benefited the most, with over half (57%) having experienced increased business as a result.

Findings suggest that there is no significant difference among the seven regions of Ireland, indicating that the benefits of The Gathering have been well spread across the country.

Fáilte Ireland chief executive Shaun Quinn, said:

“For us in Fáilte Ireland, these findings are clear evidence the Gathering as well as recent Government initiatives have helped to provide the jump-start we hoped they would… In a week which has seen tourism come out strongly in the Government's Budget for 2014, we are now in a much healthier and positive place to build on this momentum.”

Minister of State for Tourism Michael Ring, said:

“The extra funding for Fáilte Ireland's flagship tourism route, the Wild Atlantic Way, will also help tourism businesses, particularly along the western seaboard.”

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