Northern Ireland on course with growth of golf tourism to £40M

Pictured at Castlerock Golf Course is General Manager Bert Mackay with Tourism NI Golf Marketing Manager Leanne Rice.

Golf tourism in Northern Ireland is swinging its way to success with the latest monitor results from Tourism NI revealing that the value of golf tourism in 2017 reached almost £40m per year.

This represented a growth of 12% on 2016 and demonstrated that golf tourism in Northern Ireland is holding strong at a time where golf participation continues to fall in established markets. Key golf markets visiting Northern Ireland include North America, Great Britain, Republic of Ireland, the Nordics and Germany.

More than 120,000 golfers visited Northern Ireland in 2017 and they spent over £2,000 on average per trip. The research revealed that 60% of golf visitors like to include a visit to a tourist attraction when off-course and demonstrated that for every £1 spent on green fees in Northern Ireland, a minimum of £4 is spent elsewhere in the economy.

Tourism NI commissioned an annual golf tourism monitor in 2013 to gather data on the volume and value of visiting golfers to courses in Northern Ireland and gain key insights into the potential of the golf tourism market.

Tourism NI Golf Marketing Manager, Leanne Rice, commented:

“The latest golf monitor figures are very encouraging as they demonstrate strong growth for the Northern Ireland golf tourism market, with a 12% increase in 2017, particularly good news at a time when it is decreasing in established markets.

Tourism NI’s vision for golf tourism is to grow its value from the current estimate of almost £40m to £50m per year by 2020 and, in doing so, remind golfers worldwide that ‘Northern Ireland is where golf champions are born and play’.

Leanne added: “The importance of golf tourism lies in attracting high spending visitors and dispersing their spending power throughout the visitor economy. At present our Golf Tourism Strategy is in place which provides a cohesive rationale and call to action to do just that.”

For full results of the 2017 Golf Tourism Monitor click here

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