Ireland Welcomed Over 900,000 International Tourists in September This Year

A total of 900,000 international tourists visited Ireland last month, which is about 9 per cent less compared to the same period in 2019.

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The data provided by the Irish Tourism Industry Confederation (ITIC) has revealed that so far this year, visitors’ numbers are down by 20 per cent, reports.

In addition, the same shows that during September this year, Ireland was visited by 338,000 people coming from continental Europe, which means five per cent less than in 2019, making it also the strongest-performing market.

During the same month, the North American market also continued to recover, with 230,000 visitors.

ITIC also emphasized that the recovery of the sector was greatly threatened by the increase in cost inflation, the energy crisis, and supply constraints.

“Members such as hotels and restaurants were reporting that energy bills had jumped to unsustainable and unprecedented levels, warning that profit margins have come under serious pressure,” CEO of ITIC Eoghan O’Mara Walsh, pointed out in this regard.

Walsh also welcomed the Temporary Business Energy Support Scheme announced in last month’s budget. On the other hand, he criticized the government for not extending the tourism VAT rate of nine per cent beyond February.

According to him, around 20,000 tourism and hospitality businesses are facing rising energy and cost inflation.

“The thought that the Government would add to business woes early next year by hiking the Vat rate by 50 per cent beggars belief,” he also noted.

Previously, data from the Central Statistics Office (CSO) of Ireland revealed that this year the number of overseas arrivals reached 88 percent of pre-pandemic levels.

Meanwhile, air and sea travel statistics show that in the same month more than 1,703,200 overseas passengers arrived in Ireland. As a result, this represents a dramatic recovery compared to June last year, when the country recorded only 160,000 arrivals.

In addition, the CSO said overseas arrivals still remained 12 per cent below June 2019 levels, when around 1,941,100 passengers arrived in Ireland.

However, in June the recovery spread to all major roads. As for continental routes, it was found that Spanish lines were the busiest with around 250,800 passengers arriving on Spanish lines, which is more than seventeen times compared to June last year.

At the same time, if viewed in general terms, Great Britain was the main departure country for overseas travelers to Ireland. In 2020, around 530,600 passengers from Great Britain arrived by air and sea.