Indian travel trade visit iconic attractions at Ireland’s largest trade fair
Tourism Ireland is the organization 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 220,000 people. Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.ireland.com, 29 market sites available in ten language versions around the world, which attracted about 16.5 million visitors in 2015.
Tourism Ireland in association with Etihad Airways hosted top 10 travel agents from across India to Ireland’s largest tourism trade fair, Meet the Buyer and Mietheal 2017, which was organized by Tourism Ireland.
The workshop brought together over 310 overseas buyers and 455 Irish tourism businesses for three days of negotiating business deals. There were approximately 12,000 face to face meetings organized over the duration of this event – allowing international and Irish operators to meet and agree business for the 2017-2018 seasons.
India is one key emerging market for Ireland and we see great potential from this region. In the last few years there has been greater interest and numbers being generated from the India as more and more consumers want to explore and experience the beautiful green Emerald Isle.
In the run up to Meet the Buyer and Mietheal 2017 workshop, the India travel trade had an opportunity to experience Ireland’s iconic cities and attractions – Belfast, Giant’s Causeway, Dublin, Ireland’s Ancient East and one of the most exciting and newest addition to Ireland’s long list of attractions “The GAME OF THRONES” tour. The Indian travel trade enjoyed the beautiful quaint city of Londonderry and Carnlough Harbour with its simple lifestyle and picturesque harbor. The Dark Hedges at Ballymoney popular as featured in the HBO Game of Thrones series was an instant hit with the trade who were mesmerized by the mythical ancient beech trees.
The travel trade visited Titanic Belfast which was voted the world’s leading tourist attraction in 2016. They also visited the recently opened Epic Museum in Dublin, which is a journey to discover the stories of Irish emigration around the world, from early times to the modern day.
Huzan Fraser Motivala, India Representative, Tourism Ireland who accompanied the group for this key trade fair said “India is an important developing market for Tourism Ireland and one that we are committed to growing. We have been seeing a steady growth of 12-15 % in Indian visitor arrival numbers to the island of Ireland“.
Huzan added “The Irish Visa Applications YTD 16 have also seen a 33% increase in visa applications compared to the same period last year. Factors in our favour include increased air access to Ireland, particularly by Etihad Airways and Emirates via the Middle East. Qatar Airways will be launching an additional flight starting June 2017, which we believe will further aid connectivity. We hope that this FAM trip will help the travel trade to create customized itineraries to promote Ireland to their clients. Going forward, we will look to organize more such activities through 2017 and are confident of witnessing a growth in the number of Indian visitors to Ireland.”
British Irish Visa Scheme
The British Irish Visa Scheme allows for travel to and around Ireland and the UK on a single visa. The recently launched scheme allows visitors from India to travel freely within Ireland and the United Kingdom using either an Irish or UK visa. This will mean that tourists and business visitors will be able, for the first time, to visit both Ireland and the UK, including Northern Ireland, on a single visa.
Ireland’s Ancient East Ireland’s Ancient East will offer visitors a personal experience of 5000 years of history through a journey of discovery in the beautiful landscape that attracted warring settlers for millennia and illuminated by stories from the best storytellers in the world – the local people.
Wild Atlantic Way
The Wild Atlantic Way is a tourism trail on the west coast, and on parts of the north and south coasts, of the Republic of Ireland. It is a sensational journey of soaring cliffs and buzzing towns and cities, of hidden beaches and epic bays. So whether you drive it from end-to-end, or dip into it as the mood strikes, it’s going to be a once-in-a-lifetime experience.Further media information: Beena Menon / Huzan Fraser Motivala Tourism Ireland Tel: + 91 8080561620 / +91 8080561621 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org / email@example.com