Liam Griffin in Canada tourism blitz
Tourism Ireland, together with a delegation of 11 tourism companies from Canada and Ireland, among them Liam Griffin, from the Griffin Hotel Group which includes Monart and the Ferrycarrig Hotel, took part in a three-city sales blitz in Canada - meeting with travel agents, tour operators, group leaders and tour planners in the cities of Toronto, Hamilton and Ottawa.
The sales blitz involved an 'Ireland Always in Season" workshop in each city, where the participating tourism companies had the opportunity to network with, and sell to, more than 200 influential Canadian travel professionals - telling them all about the many opportunities the island of Ireland offers for group travel business. There was also an opportunity to meet with influential travel and lifestyle journalists in Toronto.
Key messages included Ireland's Ancient East. Tourism Ireland was also highlighting ease of access from Canada to Ireland, which is better than ever before. Aer Lingus and Air Canada rouge fly from Toronto to Dublin all year round; seasonal services are operated by Air Transat, WestJet and ASL Airlines; and a new Air Canada rouge flight for 2016 will serve visitors from Vancouver. Dana Welch, Tourism Ireland's Manager Canada, said: 'We are delighted that so many key decision-makers from the group travel sector in Toronto, Hamilton and Ottawa took the time to meet with our tourism partners from Ireland and Canada this week, to hear about our fantastic tourism offering and the many opportunities for group travel to Ireland. 2015 was the best year ever for Irish tourism from Canada - with visitor numbers increasing by +20% over 2014. We will be pulling out all the stops this year'.