Sunday 25 March 2018

Surge in US tourists key to bumper 2015 figures

Record year for tourism

Dublin airport. Photo: PA
Dublin airport. Photo: PA
Deirdre Reynolds

Deirdre Reynolds

One in 10 US visitors to Europe now head to Ireland, as we welcomed 7.9 million tourists in the past year.

Tourism Ireland yesterday celebrated an 11pc surge in the number of tourists to the country since last year.

Additional routes from the States and exchange rates were among the reasons cited for the bumper year.

Unveiling plans to draw a further 300,000 holidaymakers next year, CEO of Tourism Ireland Niall Gibbons said: "Following a record 2015, ambitious targets have been set for 2016 and beyond.

"Next year, we will unveil Ireland's Ancient East around the world, while continuing to place a major focus on the Wild Atlantic Way.

"This week's release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens - featuring Skellig Michael - also presents Tourism Ireland with a truly unique opportunity to highlight the south-west in 2016."

Meanwhile, Philamena Linton from Malahide yesterday became the one millionth person to go through US Customs and Border Protection at Dublin Airport this year.

Dublin Airport managing director, Vincent Harrison said: "This is a significant achievement in the airport's 75-year history."

Irish Independent

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