Great news for sector worth €773m to Irish Tourism as Annual Fáilte Ireland conference kicks off
The global organisation for adventure and activity tourism, the Adventure Travel Trade Association (ATTA) today announced that it will hold its Adventure Travel World Summit next year in Ireland – for four days in Killarney, 6-9th October, 2014. Minister for Transport, Tourism & Sport Leo Varadkar said this is a prestigious win for Ireland providing a high profile marketing opportunity to influence significant tourism decision-makers from around the world.
Approximately 700 decision-makers (tour operators, media, agents, tourism agencies) will gather in Killarney for a mixture of discussion, debate and networking centred on the fast-growing activity travel sector. The direct economic impact for the Irish economy from hosting such a global summit will be almost €1m, and the marketing, industry education and global business connectivity value it will provide will also be significant.
Meeting with ATTA representatives today to welcome their announcement, Minister Varadkar said: “We have been working promoting Ireland as an outdoor adventure destination so the decision by the Adventure Travel Trade to hold its conference in Killarney is a real boost. It’s also a great opportunity to promote Ireland directly to travellers who want an active outdoors break.”
Fáilte Ireland stressed today that the Adventure and Activity sector was a growing and lucrative tourism segment with much potential for Ireland. Fáilte Ireland CEO, Shaun Quinn, emphasised: “Hiking, cycling, water sports and other activities are all becoming increasingly popular with overseas travellers – particularly Europeans and especially in one of our key markets, Germany. With our new touring route, the Wild Atlantic Way, becoming operational next year, the conference will also be a timely opportunity to market it to key influencers in international markets and increase international visitor numbers”.
The ATTA prides itself in being the leader in Adventure tourism globally and in the forefront of promoting the sector through media and bloggers internationally. Speaking today about their decision to bring the summit to Ireland, ATTA President Shannon Stowell today said: “We have been working with Ireland for many years now. They have not only been incredible ambassadors for the global adventure tourism community, their collaborative approach and dedication to sustainable economic development made the 2014 Summit decision easy. Tour operators in Ireland are poised to succeed and will be ready to showcase adventure activities and cultural immersive experiences that are distinctively Irish.”
Value of activity Tourism
Fáilte Ireland estimates that overseas visitors engaging in activity tourism were worth €773m to the economy last year. The sector is considered a high-yield segment with the average activity-seeker spending 40% more than the average holidaymaker.
Approximately 919,000 activity tourists visited our shores in 2012 and these were broken down as follows:
• Europe – 415,000 (45%)
• Britain – 297,000 (32%)
• North America – 176,000 (19%)
• Other areas 31,000 (4%)
The activity visitor tended to stay in Ireland for almost nine days (longer than the average tourist who stays about a week) and hiking, angling, cycling, equestrian and water-based activities were the most popular pursuits engaged in while in the country. Dublin and its surrounds along with Galway, Mayo, Kerry, Cork and West Clare were particularly popular with those on a more active break.