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Tourism Ireland launches £11m autumn campaign

Ciaran Doherty, Tourism Ireland NI stakeholder liaison manager, is pictured, centre, with holidaymakers John and Jenny from the US at Dunluce Castle.

Tourism Ireland has launched an £11m multi-media autumn campaign, to boost late-season travel to Northern Ireland from around the world.

The September to December period usually yields as much as 30% of our annual overseas tourism business. A key objective for Tourism Ireland is to drive more overseas tourism business to more rural areas, throughout the off-peak and shoulder season months.

Brexit remains an ongoing challenge for overseas tourism – giving rise to consumer concern, particularly in GB and some Mainland European countries. However, the fall in the value of sterling is an opportunity for Northern Ireland, and Tourism Ireland will highlight the good value on offer from industry partners, including attractive fares and packages in GB and in other markets. An extensive programme of co-operative promotions with air and sea carriers, online travel agents, as well as traditional tour operators and travel agents, is either under way or in the pipeline.

Tourism Ireland’s autumn campaign will incorporate a major focus on attracting visitors to more rural areas and our less visited attractions and locations, between now and the end of 2019. It will highlight the many reasons to come here, including festivals and events taking place over the coming months like the Belfast International Arts Festival, the Armagh Food & Cider Festival and the Banks of the Foyle Halloween Carnival.

“Our autumn campaign aims to take advantage of late booking trends around the world, as there is still plenty of business to play for,” said Niall Gibbons, chief executive of Tourism Ireland. “Many people are opting for shorter holiday breaks and autumn is a really good opportunity, with many world-class festivals and events happening here. One of our key objectives is to drive more business to our more rural areas, right throughout the off-peak and shoulder season months.

“Brexit remains an ongoing challenge, giving rise to consumer concern particularly in GB and some Mainland European markets. We will continue to monitor the situation closely with our industry colleagues.

“Tourism Ireland’s publicity drive continues this autumn – targeting print, broadcast and online media around the world with lots of positive stories about Northern Ireland. We continue to work hard to maximise the success of winter air and sea routes. We will promote Northern Ireland through our sales missions to the United States, Canada and the UAE. In addition, Tourism Ireland will bring top overseas travel agents and tour operators here this autumn, to meet with local tourism businesses and negotiate inclusion in their 2020 brochures and programmes.”

Tourism Ireland’s autumn campaign is being rolled out in North America, Mainland Europe, GB, Australia and emerging tourism markets.

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