Cartoons used to woo Irish into ‘staycations’

Sweeping panoramic views ofIreland’s countryside have been replaced by cartoon characters as part of Fáilte Ireland’s new TV campaign to entice Irish people to holiday at home in 2013.

The brave decision to use an animated series and abandon traditional-style TV commercials to promote Irish holidays is part of the national tourism development authority’s aim to build on the €8.9m domestic trips made by Irish holidaymakers last year.

Research by Fáilte Ireland shows that 57% of people plan to take at least one break in Ireland this year The €2m marketing campaign will see the first TV ads air on Mar 11.

Fáilte Ireland’s director of marketing, John Concannon, said the home holiday market remained central to the overall performance of the tourism sector, with €1.7bn being spent by domestic tourists in 2012.

He said “variety and value” were the key attractions for encouraging people to holiday at home.

He welcomed research which showed the number of domestic tourists who were very satisfied with their recent holiday experience in Ireland had risen from 58% in 2009 to 77% last year.

A new Discover Ireland app has also been launched with listings on where to stay and what’s on, while free wi-fi is to be provided in tourist information offices around the country.

Junior tourism minister, Michael Ring, said Ireland still represented terrific value for money for both domestic and foreign tourists.

“With visitors from all over coming to Ireland this year for The Gathering, there’s every reason for Irish people to stay in Ireland,” he said.

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