SHANNON AIRPORT’s billing as the gateway to the Wild Atlantic Way is getting promotion as part of a $1m advertising campaign in the Untied States.

Tourism Ireland have launched a new campaign Stateside pushing Shannon Airport as the key arrival point for potential visitors to the Wild Atlantic Way.

Direct flights to Shannon Airport such as Aer Lingus’ routes from Boston and New York plus United Airlines’ Newark route are pushed as part of the drive.

In September, Shannon Airport Group and Tourism Ireland hosted events for travel, trade and media contacts in New York and Boston. As part of the many promotional events organised, six tourism enterprises from the Wild Atlantic Way met with around 40 tour operators, alongside travel and diaspora journalists, in both Boston and New York.

At a recent luncheon at Porto Restaurant in Boston’s Prudential Center, media and travel-industry guests were given a broad insight into the wide array of attractions in the region. CEO of Shannon Airport Group, Mary Considine highlighted that one of the main attractions for Shannon Airport was the speed at which passengers could expect to get through the airport. She told the group one passenger had clocked his travel “from ticket counter, through security, to his gate at 11 minutes”.

Adrienne O’Flynn of Shannon Heritage detailed the tourism sites still currently under their operation, Bunratty Castle & Folk Park which hosts the popular medieval banquet, Craggaunowen, where visitors can learn about Ireland in the Bronze Age, and Knappogue Castle.

Sheepdog demonstrations against the backdrop of an eleventh century stone fort was proposed to potential visitors by Maura Fay of Caherconnell Fort in Carron while Adare Manor’s Gillian Griffin showcased what the five star attraction has to offer.

Magical ferry destinations along the Cliffs of Moher and to the Aran Islands were shared by Edel Vaughan of Doolin Ferry Company. The promotion of responsible ecotourism was highlighted by Jarlath O’Dwyer who put forward the case for the Burren while the elegance of the Savoy Hotel and George Hotel was flagged by Ruth Vaughan form the Savoy Collections.

Alongside a variety of events, the campaign will feature digital outdoor ads on billboards in Boston, New York, and New Jersey as well as ads on popular digital and social platforms.

Tourism Ireland is also working with travel websites such as Travel Spike, Dunhill Travel Deals and ShermansTravel to promote holiday packages which make use of Shannon Airport and the Wild Atlantic Way. The Irish marketing body will run co-operative promotions with Aer Lingus and United, to highlight their direct flight services. The tourism campaign is set to run until the end of November.

Other parts of the country are also promoted in material rolled out in Great Britain, North America, Mainland Europe, Australia and emerging tourism markets. Donegal and Derry are being pushed to the British market as part of a €580,000 campaign by Tourism Ireland. The autumn campaign also spotlights some of Ireland’s most exciting festivals and events including the Dublin Theatre Festival, Galway International Oyster and Seafood Festival, Cork Jazz Festival, and New Year’s Festival (NYF) Dublin.

It’s all part of a bid to boost late season travel to Ireland from Ireland, the September to December period typically can yield up to thirty percent of the country’s annual overseas tourism business.

Chief Executive of Tourism Ireland, Niall Gibbons explained, “Our autumn campaign aims to take advantage of late booking trends around the world, as there is still plenty of business to play for this year”.

He confirmed that Tourism Ireland would engage with leading overseas tour operators and travel agents at events like IFTM Top Resa in Paris, TTG Travel Experience in Rimini and World Travel Market in London..


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