Failte Ireland have released their latest tourism performance reports detailing visitor numbers and revenue for regions and counties across Ireland; Wexford sees a 27% growth figure in tourism numbers and a 20% growth in revenue earned from tourism since 2013.
The latest data report released relates to 2015 and within that year some 221,000 overseas tourists visited Wexford leaving an economic impact of €65million this is in addition to some 679,000 domestic tourists visiting Wexford with an economic impact of €140million for the county. Wexford is currently ranked as the fifth most popular county in Ireland within the domestic visitor market and twelfth for the international visitor market.
Dublin, Cork, Galway and Kerry roll in ahead of Wexford in the popularity stakes for the domestic tourism sector and Wexford has very much climbed the ranks to fifth position over the last three years in-particular. Within the international market the visitor numbers to Wexford have declined by 8,000 however revenue from the sector has increased by €5million for the county.
Putting the figures into context the entire Southeast region (Carlow, Tipp South, Waterford, Kilkenny and Wexford) attracted 2,194,000 visitors in 2015, Wexford accounts for 41% of the total number of visitors to the region. The total revenue earned by the Southeast region in 2015 from overseas and domestic visitors is €506million, Wexford earned 40% of this revenue at €205million.
Investment in the Wexford tourism sector is paying dividends for the county and commenting on the latest statistics Chief Executive of Wexford County Council Tom Enright said, “It is fantastic to see Wexford’s tourism industry really thriving.
In 2010 the overseas tourism visitor numbers to the entire Southeast region was 685,000 with a revenue impact of €175million; in 2015 the county of Wexford alone achieved a total of 900,000 visitors with a revenue impact of €205million – this type of growth is to be commended.
We view the tourism sector as a very important area of economic growth for Wexford and we have invested heavily in terms of the product and the promotion of Wexford over the last number of years in particular. Future strategic plans by ourselves and other key stakeholders will see further investment in tourism infrastructure as a generator of growth, with significant capital investment committed to the development of Johnstown Castle and the Norman Way. Development plans are also in place for a number of Wexford Greenways along with important public realm enhancements for Enniscorthy and Wexford towns; building a strong visitor friendly atmosphere. Growth from the domestic market is important, but growth from the international visitor market will also be very much a focus and we are working closely with Failte Ireland and the tourism sector under the Ireland’s Ancient East banner to grow numbers and revenue from this sector.”
Visit Wexford Tourism, which is funded by private sector tourism interests along with Wexford County Council, has over the last four years rolled out a dedicated marketing and PR campaign for the county including national TV, radio, print and digital advertising along with just this year teaming up with Tourism Ireland to further promote Wexford in the overseas markets. Colm Neville Chair of Visit Wexford Tourism said, “It is great to see our commitment to working with Failte Ireland along with the investment in a dedicated marketing and PR campaign for Wexford coming to bear fruit. Visit Wexford is having a great impact on decisions made by consumers within the very important domestic tourism market and we plan to ensure the same consumer decisions include Wexford within the international visitor market in the future.”