Tourism from America to Ireland is expected to increase by 8% in 2014, according to a new report by Tourism Ireland.
The organisation is targeting growth of +8% in total American visitor numbers to Ireland this year, including growth of +7% in holidaymakers. Tourism Ireland also aims to win a greater share for Ireland of all travel by Americans to Europe.
2013 was a record year for tourism to Ireland from the United States, when we welcomed more than one million American visitors who spent about US$1 billion. And Tourism Ireland aims to keep the momentum going and build on that growth in 2014.
A number of factors are working in Ireland’s favour right now, including improved economic conditions in the US. The Croke Park Classic, which takes place on 30 August, will also provide a further, very welcome boost – with more than 15,000 Americans set to travel here for the highly-anticipated American college football game.
Another critical factor which will underpin growth is the increase – about +14% – in the number of airline seats between the US and Ireland this summer. This comes on top of a +26% increase in airline seats from the US in the peak summer season last year (which undoubtedly fuelled growth in 2013).
Given that American visitors stay longer and spend more than the average tourist, the US is a very important market for tourism to the island of Ireland. Tourism Ireland’s programme of activity includes an increased focus on digital marketing, heightened priorities on promoting shoulder month travel and a number of new initiatives targeting a younger American traveller.