The number of British visitors to Ireland increased by 4% during the first two months of 2018, according to the latest CSO travel figures.
This included a 13.1% increase during February which saw a total of 263,500 trips to Ireland by UK residents.
Tourism Ireland said that the higher British visitor numbers this year does not represent a turnaround in the long-term trend.
Tourism Ireland CEO Niall Gibbons said the impact of Brexit on outbound travel from Britain, remained a concern saying:
“The fall in the value of sterling has made holidays and short breaks here more expensive for British visitors and has made Britain more affordable for visitors from many of our top markets.”
He said that competitiveness and value for money remain more important than ever in Britain this year.
The total number of trips to Ireland by overseas residents grew by 12.4% to 575,300 in February, according to the CSO.
Trips by residents of mainland Europe rose by 18.3% to 202,100, while trips by residents of the US and Canada were up 5.4% to 79,600. However trips to Ireland from other areas of the world fell by 8% to 30,100.
The number of overseas trips by Irish residents during February fell by 2.9% to 492,400.
During the first two months of this year, the total number of trips to Ireland increased by 7.9% compared with the same time in 2017.
Mr Gibbons said air and sea access to Ireland looks very positive for the summer months, with increases in the number of airline seats from Britain, mainland Europe, North American and long-haul markets.
“We particularly look forward to seeing the impact of new long-haul flights on Irish tourism this summer – including the Hainan Airlines flight from Beijing and the Cathay Pacific flight from Hong Kong, both due to begin in June.”
26th March 2018