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Wed 29 Nov, 2023
Wednesday 29 Nov, 2023

Fáilte Ireland
Tourism Update

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Golf Tourism Convention at the Slieve Russell Hotel Golf & Country Club
A partnership between Fáilte Ireland and the International Association of Golf Tour Operators
 Wed 21st September 2022

Fáilte Ireland welcomed 50 top international golf tour operators to the Slieve Russell Hotel Golf & Country Club in Co. Cavan on Monday for the first in-person Golf Tourism Convention in two years. The convention, organised in partnership with IAGTO (International Association of Golf Tour Operators), is a sales event for leading overseas golf operators to meet directly with Irish golf industry suppliers to negotiate overseas business for the years ahead. Over 80 from the Irish golf industry attended including suppliers from Northern Ireland who were recruited in partnership with Tourism Northern Ireland.

Speaking on the importance of golf tourism to Ireland, Martin Donnelly, Golf Tourism Development Manager at Fáilte Ireland said:

“With Ireland’s world-class golf product, experienced Irish based golf buyers and a motivated, capable industry, golf tourism will play an important part in supporting tourism to rebound quickly. In 2019, Ireland welcomed over 221,000 visitors whose primary purpose of travel was a golf holiday, and they spent €300million in the local economy. As such, golf is seen as a fundamental lever in driving Ireland’s tourism industry back to pre-Covid performance levels and beyond. Due to pent up demand from 2020 and 2021, our golf tourism pipeline is very strong for this year and that looks to continue into 2023. However, Ireland will continue to rely on tour operators based overseas to support us in communicating the benefits of travelling to Ireland to play golf amongst their clients and that is why this Convention is such an important platform in growing their understanding of what Ireland has to offer.”

IAGTO Chief Executive, Peter Walton, added "After two years apart, this week's Golf Tourism Convention and associated inspection trips will be instrumental not only in getting both sides of the golf tourism industry back together again, but also in showcasing the significant investments and developments that have taken place or are underway throughout the country. The convention represents a unique opportunity for hotels, golf courses and other golf tourism industry suppliers to get in front of leading decision makers from golf tour operators from all key markets who are responsible for driving golf tourism to Ireland. Business will be signed and customer experience will be enhanced, as a direct result of the interactions this week."

The two-day trade event kicked off on Monday with a golf tournament at PGA National accredited Slieve Russell Hotel Golf & Country Club. A full day workshop took place on Tuesday, facilitating over 1700 face to face meetings between Irish suppliers and international tour operators. Following the two-day convention, the tour operators are going on a familiarisation trip to experience some of the best courses in Ireland right across the island’s four programme brands, Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands, The Wild Atlantic Way, Ireland’s Ancient East and Dublin.

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