Number of visitors jumps 6.5pc
Ireland is still the destination of choice for many overseas visitors but we're staying at home more, writes Edel O'Connell.
Latest Central Statistics Office figures show a welcome increase in the number of people travelling to Ireland. The trend began at the start of this year and has continued into the third quarter of 2011.
The number of trips here made by overseas visitors between July and September was just over 2.1 million, up 6.5pc, or almost 130,000, compared with the same period last year.
Tourism is Ireland's largest indigenous industry. It contributes in excess of 4pc of GNP and provides employment for over 200,000 people.
But the CSO figures have revealed that the number of Irish travelling abroad fell sharply over the last 12 months.
We made fewer than two million trips abroad in the third quarter of this year -- this is down 7pc from the same period last year.