Tourism Ireland’s golf promotional programme for 2018 kicked off in Orlando, Florida, with 12 golf and tourism operators from around Ireland, and two American golf tour operators, joining Tourism Ireland at the PGA Golf Merchandise Show to highlight Ireland’s world-class golf.
The PGA Show is one of the biggest golf exhibitions in the USA, attracting more than 40,000 golf professionals and enthusiasts, as well as around 1,000 influential golf journalists, each year.
“The American golf market remains a priority for Tourism Ireland in 2018 and we will continue to promote the island of Ireland as a top golf destination, capitalising on the global success of our golfers, including Rory McIlroy, Padraig Harrington, Shane Lowry, Darren Clarke and Graeme McDowell,” said Alison Metcalfe, Tourism Ireland’s Head of North America. “Golf is the world’s largest sports-related travel market and Tourism Ireland is working hard to drive home the message that a golfing holiday in Ireland is about much more than a round of 18 holes – the combination of our world-class golf and our unique brand of hospitality plays a key role in attracting American golfers to visit.”
Ireland’s world-class golf was highlighted to some 100 influential golf tour operators, journalists and golf pros earlier in the week, before the PGA Show began, at a special Ireland Golf Day, sponsored by Tourism Ireland and North & West Coast Links, at The Golden Bear Club at Keene’s Point in Orlando.
Tourism Ireland will roll out an extensive programme of activity to promote golf on the island of Ireland in the USA this year – in particular highlighting the 2018 Irish Open at Ballyliffin and The Open in 2019 at Royal Portrush. Building on the successful ‘Home of Champions’ campaign, Tourism Ireland’s TV ad will air on the NBC Golf Channel and online on Golfchannel.com around the ‘Majors’ – kicking off with the Masters at Augusta, in April. A digital campaign will run on popular golf websites, driving potential golf holidaymakers to Ireland.com/golf; and Tourism Ireland will invite influential American golf journalists to come and experience Ireland’s world-class courses for themselves.
Alison Metcalfe added: “In 2017, we welcomed a record 1.83 million North American visitors to the island of Ireland. Looking to the year ahead, we are confident that our strategy – combined with more airline seats than ever before from the USA, a strong dollar, as well as the strength and competitiveness of the vacation experience right around the island of Ireland – will deliver further growth. Our aim is to deliver a 5% increase in visitor numbers and 7% increase in revenue from North America in 2018. We look forward to welcoming more of our great friends from the USA this year and in the years to come.”
Pictured above are golf and tourism operators from Ireland and the USA with Alison Metcalfe (eighth right) and Billy Condon (right), both Tourism Ireland, at the PGA Golf Merchandise Show in Orlando.