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News : Irish Economy Last Updated: Sep 17, 2013 - 7:41 AM


Tourism Ireland and Varadkar launch campaign to boost late-season travel
By Finfacts Team
Sep 16, 2013 - 4:53 PM

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Tourism Ireland and Leo Varadkar, minister for transport, tourism & sport have launched a €19m promotional campaign, to boost late-season travel to Ireland from around the world during the last few months of The Gathering. The September to December period usually yields as much as 30% of Ireland’s overseas tourism business.

The campaign will highlight the many festivals and events taking place right around the island this autumn, many of them with a Gathering theme – from the Dublin Festival Season (which includes the Dublin Theatre Festival, Open House Dublin and the Bram Stoker Festival), to the Belfast Festival at Queens, Wexford Festival Opera, Westport Food Festival, Waterford Harvest Food Festival, Cork Jazz Festival and the Galway International Oyster and Seafood Festival. An extra-special focus will be placed on highlighting the New Year’s Eve event in Dublin – NYE 2014 – which is the grand finale of The Gathering and which looks set to be even bigger and better than last New Year’s event.

The campaign – which is being rolled out in Great Britain, the United States, Mainland Europe, Australia and emerging markets - - will incorporate a major focus on city breaks as well as on attracting visitors to more rural areas over the coming months. Highlights of the activity include co-operative promotions with Aer Lingus and Ryanair, transatlantic and long-haul airlines like American Airlines, Etihad and Emirates; cinema, radio, print and online advertising; as well as extensive PR and social media activity.

Leo Varadkar said: “It’s been a great year for Irish tourism so far with a 6% increase in visitors. There are still lots of great festivals for the Gathering between now and New Year. This €19 million campaign will help keep momentum going, and has been fine-tuned for key markets who are likely to visit.”

Tourism Ireland CEO Niall Gibbons said: ““In addition, Tourism Ireland is bringing in over 120 top overseas Tour Operators this autumn to meet with hundreds of tourism businesses across the island and negotiate inclusion in their 2014 programmes.”

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