• Consumers spent an estimated €183m in restaurants and pubs in the North West of Ireland last year, according to the AIB Hospitality and Tourism Outlook for 2019.

    According to the Outlook, consumers spent in the region of €96m in restaurants last year, while pubs took in about €87m.

    It is estimated that consumer spending in hotels in the North West was €424m in 2018.

    While domestic spend made up the majority of this figure, at 60%, United Kingdom spend comprised a significant 27%.

    August is the busiest month for restaurants and hotels in the North West, while July is the busiest month for pubs, according to the Outlook.

    At the launch of the Outlook report a cheque for €2,000 was presented to the Jack & Jill Children’s Foundation by AIB to support their on-going work with children and families in communities all over Ireland.

  • 53 million euro is being made available for greenway projects across the country.

    The government's looking for funding applications to build a greenway between 2019 and 2021.

    The Department for Tourism say the trails can transform rural towns and villages - boosting tourism and job creation.

    The closing date for applications is November 30th.

  • The Achill Experience visitor attraction has been allocated €75,000 to fund a 60 square metre extension.

    The funding has been granted through the Dormant Accounts Fund in Minister Michael Ring’s Department.

    This investment will support the building of an extension to the front of the property which will contain a new enlarged entrance, retail space, rest area and cafe.

    Almost 70,000 visitors have enjoyed Achill Experince since it opened its doors in 2016.

    Minister Ring has been telling Midwest Radio that the aquarium and visitor centre is the feather in the cap of Achill.

  • Tourism buyers from 22 countries have toured the Wild Atlantic Way over the weekend, ahead of attending Meitheal - Ireland's largest tourism trade fair - which takes place today and tomorrow at the City West Hotel in Dublin.

    The group visited a number of tourism providers in Mayo, to find out what the county has to offer visitors - including Westport House, the Museum of Country Life at Turlough, Castlebar, Glen Keen Farm, Foxford Woollen Mills, the Jackie Clarke Collection, Connacht Whiskey Co, Ceide Fields, the Ballycroy National Park, Cleggan Mountain Boardwalk and Electric Escapes bike tours.

    Buyers from China, India, the Middle East, the UK, the United States and mainland Europe are among those being hosted by Fáilte Ireland, so they can sell this region to their customers around the world.



  • A Westport Councillor is calling on Government to introduce two different VAT rates for the hospitality industry.

    Fine Gael Councillor Peter Flynn believes hotel rooms being sold for €150 euro or less should be subject to the lower rate of 9%, while the higher VAT rate could apply to more expensive hotels.

    The VAT rate for the tourism and hospitality sector was increased to 13.5% in the last Budget.

    He's also proposing the introduction of a tourist tax, which would see visitors paying a small tax on their arrival at a hotel, which would be ringfenced for projects in that town.

    Councillor Flynn's comments follow concerns expressed by the Restaurants Association of Ireland that one in 5 Irish restaurants could face closure in the event of a no-deal Brexit.