Fáilte Ireland’s Meitheal, which takes place virtually today until Thursday, is the most important event for the Irish tourism industry to pitch to hugely influential international buyers, reports travel writer Clodagh Dooley
From today, more than 480 Irish tourism businesses from across the country will meet virtually to sell the best of Ireland to 216 top international tourism buyers from Australia, the USA, and every corner of the globe. Each of the buyers represents tens of thousands of possible customers and the opportunity to influence their travel itineraries for 2022 is invaluable.
Now in its 46th year, Meitheal is Fáilte Ireland’s flagship trade event and most important event for the Irish tourism industry, which is organised in conjunction with Tourism Ireland. For the second year running, Meitheal will be a virtual event held over three days from 13-15th April to enable businesses in the Irish tourism industry to pitch to hugely influential international buyers from 19 countries.
They’ll be showcasing the best of what they offer with the prize aim of being scheduled on the itineraries of the global tour operators. More than 8,650 appointments or ‘pitch meetings’ are available and deals worth millions of euro to the Irish economy could be signed over the three days.
Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media Catherine Martin said, “Events such as Meitheal are so important for our recovery and together, we will be ready for that rebound. I am really pleased to see the significant number of Irish businesses and overseas buyers from over 19 countries registered this year. This shows the pent-up demand that exists, now more than ever, for what Ireland has to offer as a country.
“As a Government, we have invested heavily in Ireland’s tourism offering over many years. Working with the trade and agencies such as Fáilte Ireland, we have created and developed significant ideas which we believe stand out and act as a magnet for visitors. For a small island, we have a huge amount to offer, thanks to our world-class scenery, hospitality, activities, attractions, culture, heritage and food – the list is endless. The richness of our offering is testament to what a strong, collaborative and innovative tourism industry we have.”
Fáilte Ireland’s CEO Paul Kelly commented, “Our Irish tourism businesses are acutely aware that it is vital to take the time to start reconnecting with international business contacts and securing business for next year and beyond. The opportunities gained at virtual Meitheal will be all-important for tourism and hospitality businesses, communities, and destination Ireland, particularly for the years ahead when it is safe once again for international travel to return to Ireland.
“We know that safety has become a key concern for tourists, particularly over the last year. Tourism businesses across Ireland have been taking all the necessary steps to ensure the safety of visitors is a top priority. We have introduced a Covid-19 Safety Charter, so that businesses can showcase their commitment to following all recommended safety and cleaning guidelines. This is on the profiles of the Irish businesses meeting with overseas buyers over the next few days. When international travel can safely return, you can be assured that this commitment to visitor safety will remain steadfast.”
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