A Failte Ireland survey conducted in 2009 showed 75% of those who responded reporting a decline in their business activity. The same survey conducted in 2016 showed a decline of just 5%. Ireland is enjoying a tourism boom and 2016 was one of its strongest years with the value of the industry standing at €5.7bn. Employment in the sector has also increased to 220,000 with 24% of respondents saying they hired extra full-time staff in 12 months. 39% had employed extra part-time and seasonal staff.
Dublin Airport handled 27.9m passengers in 2016 which represents an 11% increase on 2015. The increase was facilitated by Dublin being a secondary hub between Europe & the US. The number of passengers transferring through Dublin Airport as a result of this was 1.2m – 23% increase on 2015 numbers.
Dublin City Council has given the go-ahead for a 124 bedroom hotel in the city centre. The hotel is being developed by Panda Waste’s Eamon Waters.
According to a report by the IATA (the International Air Transport Association) citing its 20-year forecast, China will overtake the USA as the biggest aviation market in the world. Asia-Pacific will see 7.2bn airline passengers by 2035. Currently, 2016 saw 3.8bn (estimate) from this region. 40% of the world’s aircraft are currently leased, with 50% of leased aircraft managed and owned from Ireland. 9 out of 10 of the world’s aircraft lessors are located in Ireland.
Shannon Airport officially enjoyed a 24% increase in air passenger numbers since 2013. 1.7million passengers used the airport in 2016 which is a 2% increase on 2015.
Westport House has been sold to the Hughes family who currently own Hotel Westport. The property was on the market for €10m. They have pledged to invest €50m into the estate.
Figures from the CSO show that Ireland received 10.9% more overseas visitors than 2015, with more than 9.5m visiting these shores. Britain was the largest visitor accounting for 3.9m of those tourists, which is a 10.6% increase on 2015. Europe accounted for a further 3.3m visitors. North America saw 1.8m tourists coming to Ireland, and those from ‘Other Areas’ rose by 2.2% to 550,200.
Irish residents who took trips abroad between October – December 2016 grew by 10% to 1.7m. Overall for 2016, 7.4m Irish residents went abroad – an increase of 6.3%.
Knock airport saw its passenger traffic increase by 7% in 2016 to 734,031 passengers. An extra 48,563 people used the airport mainly drive by new services to Birmingham, Edinburgh, and Costa Dorada.