Soft September

  • The CSO figures for September released today show that overseas visitors dropped by 11% on September of last year.
  • Visitors from Continental Europe were down by just under 4%, while North American visitors dropped by 9%.  The biggest disappointment was the UK where visitor numbers for the month dropped by 17%.
  • Although forming a much smaller portion of the overall numbers, visitors from other areas were slightly up on last year.
  • The September outcome from the UK (-17%) is extremely worrying in that UK visitors to Europe were down much less in the same month –8%.  This follows a similar pattern in July, Ireland –17%, UK to Europe –3%.
  • Overall visitor numbers for the nine months to the end of September are only marginally behind the same period last year, which contrasts with a growth of 4% in 2007 over 2006.

    The number of visits from Continental Europe is marginally ahead of last year for the first nine months, UK visitors are down almost 3%, and North American visitors are down by almost 5%.  (This is a better result than the UK whose North American visitors are down 9% January to September.  In fact in the 3rd quarter, July/August/September, North American visitors to the UK were down 21%, and in September an even more dramatic drop of 27% was experienced.)

  • But back to Ireland, when looking at the three month high season period of July, August and September, the UK was down almost 10% on the same period last year, the US down 11% and Continental Europe down just under 4%.
  • France was actually up 4% for the 3 peak months, Germany was in line with last year, while Italy and Spain dropped 18% and 9% respectively.  Poland also dropped 18%.
  • Overseas trips by Irish residents for September were very slightly down on September of last year, which was in sharp contrast to the increase of 14.5% in September 2007 compared to the same month in 2006.  Year to date Irish visits abroad are running 4.4% ahead of last year, though it is evident that this market also is contracting.
  • Taken together, these figures confirm something which we always knew, that travel and tourism is not immune to the financial and economic difficulties which prevail in all our main markets.
Share this:Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on TumblrPin on PinterestShare on LinkedIn
To unsubscribe from the ITIC newsletter, please email with "Unsubscribe From Ezine List" as the subject.