|Irish Tourism News
Tourism Ireland Launches 2018 Marketing Plans
Tourism Ireland in the United States launched its marketing plans for
Jan.18 at an event in New York attended by leading tour operators, travel
agents and journalists from the tri-State area.
The organization aims to surpass the record-breaking performance of
2017 and to grow revenue from North American visitors by +7% in 2018 i.e.
€1.78 billion generated by 1.93 million visitors (+5%).
Tourism Ireland will prioritize North America once again in 2018, as
a market which offers a strong return on investment, in terms of holiday
visitors and expenditure. Speakers at the marketing launch party emphasized
that important ‘culturally curious’ and ‘social energizer’ audiences will
be targeted with distinctive vacation experiences, events and special offers
tailored to their interests.
Tourism Ireland’s extensive program of targeted activity for 2018 is
already under way in the US. A major TV campaign is running on ABC, NBC,
and CBS in five priority markets: New York, Boston, Chicago, Philadelphia
and Washington DC. The TV campaign is complemented by extensive digital
advertising and social media activity, specially designed to stimulate
spring and summer travel.
Tourism officials pointed out that the outlook for 2018 is positive,
with a number of factors working in Ireland’s favor – including more airline
seats between North America and Ireland (64,000 seats weekly from 21 gateways),
with a number of new flights and expanded services in the pipeline for
this year – including new Aer Lingus flights from Seattle and Philadelphia
Alison Metcalfe, Tourism Ireland’s Head of North America, spoke at the
launch, saying, "In 2017, we welcomed a record 1.83 million North American
visitors to the island of Ireland. Looking to the year ahead, we are confident
that our strategy – combined with more airline seats than ever before from
the US, a strong dollar, as well as the strength and competitiveness of
the vacation experience right around the island of Ireland – will deliver
further growth." She added, "We look forward to welcoming more of our great
friends from the United States this year and in the years to come."
According to Metcalfe, Tourism Ireland has a clear focus for the year
ahead, one that aims to deliver a +5% increase in visitor numbers and +7%
increase in revenue from North America. "We will achieve this by working
in close collaboration with our Irish and American tourism partners, rolling
out an extensive program of high impact campaigns and promotions which
will target those consumers with greatest potential to travel to Ireland,"
In 2017, 1.83 million Americans and Canadians visited Ireland (up +16.7%
on 2016), delivering revenue of €1.67 billion for the economy (+14.5%
on 2016). IThe tourism officials said that in 2018, Tourism Ireland will
create ‘stand out’ for the island of Ireland in the US, highlighting experiences
like the Wild Atlantic Way, the Causeway Coastal Route, Ireland’s Ancient
East, Belfast and Dublin. Screen tourism will also remain a priority, as
the organization continues to capitalize on its connections with Star
Wars and Game of Thrones. Promotions will grow travel to the
regions of Ireland, during the shoulder and off-peak seasons.
Irish Tourism Facts:
Tourism Ireland is the organiztion responsible for promoting the island
of Ireland overseas as a leading holiday destination.
Tourism is the island of Ireland’s largest indigenous industry; responsible
for in excess of 4% of GNP in the Republic of Ireland and employing approximately
281,000 people across the island.
In 2017, Ireland welcomed approximately 10.65 million overseas visitors
to the island of Ireland, delivering revenue of about €5.78 billion.
Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.ireland.com,
29 market sites available in 11 language versions around the world, which
attracted around 19.3 million visitors in 2017.