Latest Visitor Attitudes Survey results shows recovery continues
07 April 2014
Overseas holidaymakers continue to rate Ireland as value for money and our people, scenery and culture remain our strongest assets – this is according to top line figures from the latest Visitor Attitudes Survey.
The views of more than 1,500 overseas visitors to Ireland throughout 2013 were surveyed as part of the research. Minister for Transport and Tourism Leo Varadkar TD has said the findings will inform tourism development for the next few years.
According to the survey’s top line results:
Ireland exceeds visitor’s expectations
Almost four out of ten (39%) overseas visitors reported that their experience in Ireland exceeded their expectations while a further six out of ten (60%) said that Ireland met their expectations.
Those whose holiday exceeded their expectations cited a number of reasons for this, including:
- Irish people – 68%
- Scenery – 54%
- Irish history and culture – 31%
- Weather better than expected – 30%
- Food quality and variety – 21%
Visitors will recommend and return
Over half (56%) said they would definitely return in the next few years while a further four out of ten hoped to return at some time in the future.
Two thirds (66%) of visitors said they would definitely be encouraging friends and family to come here. In the long haul market, eight out of ten (79%) of North Americans said they would definitely be endorsing Ireland.
Value for money remains
Over half of overseas visitors (51%) of overseas visitors found Ireland to be good or very good value while a further four in ten (39%) found the value for money levels here to be fair.
Top five experiences
What exactly did our overseas visitors get up to in Ireland in 2013? When surveyed, the top five experiences mentioned by overseas visitors were:
- “Listened to live music in a pub” – 83%
- “Visited a coastal town” – 82%
- “Tasted a Guinness” – 79%
- “Visited a food or craft market” – 49%
- “Took part in a city tour” – 41%
Word of mouth got them here
Finally, there was an interesting spike in the proportion of overseas holidaymakers who mentioned word of mouth as an influence to choose Ireland to visit last year (from 28% in 2012 to 36% in 2013).
Discussing the results, Fáilte Ireland CEO Shaun Quinn emphasised –
“A recovery in both profitability and employment in the tourism sector is now quite evident and the prospects for the year ahead are really strong. The tourism industry has played, over the last year, a significant role in Ireland’s economic recovery. As the sector continues to shift from the domestic market to a greater focus on more lucrative high value overseas visitors, it will bolster its contribution to the country’s overall recovery.”