Thursday 19 April 2018

Trips to Ireland up by 18pc in positive start to new year

Shaun Quinn, chief executive of Failte Ireland. Photo: Frank McGrath
Shaun Quinn, chief executive of Failte Ireland. Photo: Frank McGrath

Jane O'Faherty

The number of overseas visitors to Ireland rose by more than 18pc in recent months as the tourism surge continues.

New CSO data for the period between November 2015 and January 2016 show an increase of 271,400 trips to Ireland from abroad compared to the same time the previous year.

But Fáilte Ireland CEO Shaun Quinn cautioned against complacency, adding "we mustn't lose the run of ourselves."

"Recent fluctuations in the currency markets - particularly Sterling - and international volatility could change the current positive narrative very quickly," he said.

United Kingdom residents remained the most frequent visitors, accounting for 815,700 of trips to Ireland for the period.

Meanwhile, trips by residents of other European countries rose by 21pc to 576,200.

Visits from residents of North America also increased to 240,200 - up by 19.4pc.

The total number of overseas trips to Ireland in the last quarter amounted to 1,745,400.

Transport Minister Paschal Donohoe welcomed the statistics, saying that Ireland would be "aiming for even further growth in visitor numbers and associated revenue in 2016".

Tourism Minister Michael Ring added that the country's tourism industry continued to provide "jobs in every part of Ireland".

Niall Gibbons, Tourism Ireland CEO, said the figures showed a "very positive" start to 2016.

Irish Independent

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