Friday 23 March 2018

Tourists feel squeeze as capital now 12th 'most expensive' city

Dublin is expensive for tourists
Dublin is expensive for tourists
Emma Jane Hade

Emma Jane Hade

Experts have warned that it is essential for tourism that the Government maintains a low VAT rate as Dublin soars in the world rankings as one of the most expensive places to take a city break.

Jumping up seven places from last year, the capital now ranks as the 12th most expensive city break destination in the world, according to travel website TripAdvisor.

The study found that a night in Dublin would cost an average of €264 for two people – based on the average prices of dinner for two with wine, two cocktails, a taxi and a night in a minimum of a four-star hotel.

Adrian Cummins from the Restaurant Association of Ireland said that in order to keep Ireland competitive on the tourism market, the VAT rate of 9pc for restaurants must be maintained.

"Ireland's competitiveness has increased substantially over the last couple of years, due to the fact that we have reduced that VAT rate in restaurants to 9pc.

"And that has reduced prices in Ireland and it is important that is kept in place for the foreseeable future. Otherwise we will see Ireland's ranking increasing as an expensive destination," he said.

The price comparison study is based upon 48 of the world's "key tourist cities" and takes into account the typical expenditure for two people.

The average price for a meal for two and a bottle of wine in Dublin was €72.45, while the average price for two dry martinis was €26.58.

Hotels are generally the most expensive overhead cost for any trip, and a night in a minimum of a four-star hotel was reported to cost an average price of €149.93 for two people for one night.

However, Dublin's taxi fares were deemed to be reasonably priced, and a two-mile return journey cost an average of just €15.05.

The most expensive city was London where the average getaway cost €387, while the cheapest on the list was Hanoi in Vietnam where a city break cost an average price of €113.78.

Alex Connolly from Failte Ireland said that he would be "wary of drawing conclusions from one survey."

"One survey would not make a trend," he added.

The Irish Hotels Federation was also critical and a spokesperson last night said that they don't believe it reflects "the value available in Dublin hotels".

Irish Independent

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