TOURISM IRELAND HAS unveiled an ambitious plan to increase the number of American visitors to Ireland by more than 20 per cent.
The new three-year plan called ‘Make Ireland Jump Out’ focuses on marketing specific things that Americans like about Ireland, and aims to see a greater share for Ireland of all travel by Americans to Europe, as well as an increase of more than one fifth in US visitors between 2013 and 2015.
More than one million Americans are expected in Ireland this year, spending more than $1 billion, Tourism Ireland said.
Tourism figures in Ireland have been slowly increasing after cratering during the depths of the recession. The number of people who visited Ireland at the end of 2012 increased by almost 4 per cent compared to the previous year, with American visitors making up the single biggest increase.
Minister for Transport Leo Varadkar said the new approach will focus on specific things that Americans like about Ireland, such as golfing breaks.
Tourism Ireland says it will target new groups, such as young independents – couples or groups of friends, typically in their late 20s, who are web savvy and relatively affluent – as well as middle-aged explorers – aged between 40 and 55, interested in history and culture – and mature couples.
“This strategy gives us a platform to build on the incredibly positive buzz building up around The Gathering Ireland 2013, which has already made Ireland one of the recommended places to be this year for the New York Times, USA Today and Fodor’s,” said Minister Leo Varadkar.