Varadkar & Ring seek views on the future of Irish tourism

11th September, 2013

Tourism policy review aims to be most wide-ranging in years

The tourism industry, tourists and members of the public have been invited to contribute their ideas on future plans for Ireland’s tourism industry, in a new Government initiative launched today.

Minister for Transport, Tourism & Sport Leo Varadkar and Minister of State for Tourism & Sport Michael Ring launched a wide-ranging review of Ireland’s tourism policy at a conference in Dublin Castle. This is the first time this has been done since New Horizons back in 2003.

The consultation and question paper published by the two Ministers asks the tourism industry, stakeholders in the public and private sectors, tourists and the general public to answer challenging questions about the future of Irish tourism.

Minister Varadkar said: “Tourism has moved from crisis mode two years ago, firmly into recovery mode now. With the success of The Gathering, a significant increase in overseas visits for three years in a row and a good summer for domestic tourism behind us, we now must ask ourselves, what next? I want this to be the most far-reaching review of Irish tourism policy review in years. 2013 has been a good year for Irish tourism. What I want now is a plan for sustainable growth out to 2020 and beyond.”

“This is the right time to think about where our priorities for tourism policy should lie, to maximise the benefits to Ireland and make sure we apply our resources where they can make the biggest difference.”

Minister Ring said: “We want to hear from everybody on this.  Tourism brings jobs to every part of the country and it is only right that everybody with a stake gets to say what they think we should be doing.”

The discussion document outlines developments in tourism in Ireland and worldwide in recent years, and raises key questions on a number of themes.

The consultation document includes a total of 20 topics on which views and submissions are invited. They include:

•          where our priority country markets should be;

•          what should the balance of spending be among marketing, events and attractions;

•          how we can build on the success of the Gathering;

•          how can be best harness local authorities, communities, business to support tourism;

•          how should we measure success, visits or revenue.

Copies of the document will be available on the website of the Department of Transport, Tourism & Sport and submissions can be emailed to or sent by post to:

Tourism Policy

Department of Transport, Tourism & Sport

44 Kildare Street

Dublin 2

Submissions should be sent by 1 November 2013.