Irish hotel and guesthouse owners are forecasting a good summer for the sector, according to the results of the latest industry survey undertaken by the Irish Hotels Federation (IHF).
The majority (70%) say business is up compared to the same time last year, with increases in staycations and visitors from overseas markets including North America and continental Europe.
Michael Lennon, President of the Irish Hotels Federation, said that although the outlook is encouraging there is little room for complacency. “Despite the upturn, not every tourism business is enjoying the same level of success and the hotel sector is still a number of years away from achieving sustainability in certain regional areas,” he said.
Almost half (49%) of hoteliers are seeing a drop in UK business while one in five say their advance bookings for the rest of the summer are down compared to last year. With so many still experiencing a drop off in business, Mr. Lennon says the UK market continues to be a significant concern.
According to the survey, the domestic market remains buoyant with six in ten hoteliers seeing an increase in home grown business compared to this time last year. In terms of overseas visitors, six in ten (60%) hoteliers say business levels from the US are up while four in ten (41%) are seeing an increase from Germany.
Employment growth is set to continue in 2018 and the Irish Hotels Federation President said the tourism industry is on track to creating 40,000 new jobs by 2021.