Tourism Ireland warmly welcomes the arrival today of the new US Airways flight from Philadelphia to Shannon Airport. The service will operate daily until September and will help boost both leisure and business tourism from the all-important US market to Shannon and the west of Ireland.
Working closely with airlines to build demand for routes is a key priority for Tourism Ireland. Niall Gibbons, CEO of Tourism Ireland, said: “This is a wonderful boost for tourism to Ireland from the US. We have worked with US Airways for many years and we look forward to working closely with them to maximise the promotion of this new route. As an island, direct, convenient and competitive access services are critical to achieving growth in inbound tourism. Tourism Ireland is committed to working with US Airways, Shannon Airport and other tourism interests, through co-operative marketing, to drive demand for this new service – as we work with other carriers and partners to promote and help maintain vital routes and services to the island."
Niall Gibbons continued: “The United States is a tremendously important tourism market, second only to Britain in terms of delivering visitor numbers. 2012 was one of the strongest years for visitors from the US to Ireland; and given that the latest tourism figures from the CSO, for the period January-March 2013, showed the best-ever first quarter performance from North America since 2004, we are optimistic that 2013 will be the best year ever – when we hope to welcome over one million American visitors, spending about US$1 billion. Tourism Ireland has a strong and comprehensive promotional programme under way highlighting ‘The Gathering Ireland 2013’ – we’re extending an invitation to the millions of people across the United States with an ancestral link with Ireland to ‘come home’ this year.”
Further media information:
Sinéad Grace, Tourism Ireland
Tel: 087-685 9027
Notes to Editors:
• Tourism Ireland is the organisation responsible for promoting the island of Ireland overseas as a leading holiday destination.
• Tourism is the island of Ireland’s largest indigenous industry; responsible for in excess of 4% of GNP in the Republic of Ireland and employing approximately 200,000 people.
• In 2012, an estimated 7.27 million overseas visitors came to the island of Ireland, delivering revenue of approximately €3.51 billion. Overseas tourism business accounts for 59% of all tourism revenue.
• Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.ireland.com, currently rolling out in 11 different language versions for over 30 individual markets around the world.
• ‘The Gathering Ireland 2013’ is Ireland’s biggest ever tourism initiative, consisting of a year-long programme of festivals, events and gatherings in every part of the country; Tourism Ireland has an extensive programme of promotions under way to highlight ‘The Gathering Ireland 2013’ around the world, working closely with the ‘Gathering’ project team.