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Thursday 7 December 2023 Dublin: 9°C
Laura Hutton/Photocall
best little country

It looks like it's going to be a bumper year for Irish tourism

538,000 tourists have poured in so far this year.

OVERSEAS TOURISTS HAVE spent some €219 million in Ireland since the beginning of the year, new Central Statistics Office (CSO) figures show.

The total number of trips to Ireland increased by 14.1% between January and March, according to the CSO.

Just over 1.5 million inbound trips were made by non-residents in the first three months of the year – just under 190,000 more than the same period in 2014.

  • More than a third of visitors (538,000) were tourists.
  • Nearly one in three (488,000) travelled over to visit friends or relatives.
  • Just under a fourth of inbound travellers (364,000) were here for business reasons.


When fares were excluded, total tourism and travel earnings from overseas travellers to Ireland increased by 10.5%, from €534 million to €590 million, this year.

And there was also a significant rise in the number of overseas trips made by Irish residents in the three months under review.

Just over 1.3 million outbound trips were recorded between January and March, compared to under 1.2 million during the same period last year.

Record year

Minister for Transport and Tourism, Paschal Donohoe, said that the growth “confirms that the measures undertaken by the Government to boost Ireland’s attractiveness as a destination are working.”

Fáilte Ireland CEO, Shaun Quinn, predicted that, on current trends, Ireland “may be looking at a record year for overseas visitors in 2015.”

Tourism Ireland, meanwhile, said the figures represent “an excellent start to the year”.

The organisation is aiming to bring a total of 7.74 million visitors to Ireland in 2015, delivering close to €4 billion to the Irish economy.

Read: Brits and Americans are queuing up to get into Ireland >

Read: Tourism Ireland wants to surpass visitor records in 2015 … here’s how >

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