Ivan Keatley, Mayor of Kildare; Orla Carey, Tourism Ireland; and Peter Carey, Chief Executive of Kildare County Council, in the Tourism Ireland office in New York.
Representatives of Kildare County Council are in New York for St Patrick’s Day to promote Kildare as a tourism destination.
Yesterday, they met with senior executives from Tourism Ireland in the US.
They were briefed on Tourism Ireland’s promotional programme for 2017, which is in full swing right now.
Alison Metcalfe, Tourism Ireland’s Head of North America, said: “We were delighted to meet with the representatives of KildareCounty Council and to have the opportunity to brief them about the extensive promotional programme we are undertaking in the United States this year.
“Our ambition is to surpass the record-breaking performance of 2016 and to deliver a +9% increase in revenue and a +6% increase in visitor numbers from North America in 2017 i.e. €1.6 billion generated by 1.7 million visitors.
“St Patrick’s Day traditionally marks the real start of the tourism season for us; our aim is to bring a smile to the faces of people everywhere and to convey the message that Ireland offers the warmest of welcomes and great fun, as well as wonderful scenery and heritage. We are using every opportunity to capitalise on Ireland’s heightened profile this week; the saturation coverage about Ireland at this time of year – across the airwaves, in newspapers and digital media – is an invaluable boost for our overall tourism marketing drive in 2017.”
Tourism Ireland aims to build on the success of 2016, which was the fourth record-breaking year in a row for Irish tourism from the United States.
With the recent announcement by Norwegian of new flights to Ireland from New York (Stewart International Airport) and Providence (Rhode Island), the total number of transatlantic airline seats this summer will be 60,000 - a 10,000 increase over 2016.
For the first time ever, One World Trade Center (the main building of the re-built World Trade Center complex in New York and the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere), La Concha Visitors Center at the Neon Museum in Las Vegas and the fireworks show at the Plaza Hotel & Casino, also in Las Vegas, will participate in Tourism Ireland’s Global Greening initiative to celebrate St Patrick and Ireland.
Other major landmarks to be illuminated in green include the Empire State Building, the ‘Welcome’ sign in Las Vegas and the world-famous Niagara Falls.