The Domestic Market – Key to Tourism Recovery
A note from the Domestic Tourism Strategy Steering Group Chairperson, Ciaran O’Neill.
More than any sector tourism has been severely impacted. However, as we move out of crisis and begin to understand what the ‘new norm’ will look like we must now begin to chart the road to recovery for the tourism industry throughout Northern Ireland.
The domestic market will be key to the sectors recovery.
For practical reasons the NI consumer will be likely highly unlikely to travel overseas for holidays in the near term. Not only will there be travel restrictions but many consumers will not want to travel abroad. Recent research shows that taking a holiday on the island of Ireland represents a much comfortable proposition than going abroad. Additionally, while the pandemic has damaged consumer confidence, the enforced lock down has also limited their spending and created a latent desire and pent up demand to take short breaks and holidays. This is a demand that the domestic market is best positioned to meet.
Prior to Covid 19 a Domestic Tourism Strategy was developed, with a plan to launch the strategy in quarter one 2020. For obvious reasons this launch and the implementation of strategy was delayed. However, now more than ever the strategy and the consumer insight it delivers is of value and importance.
Although things have changed the essence of the domestic consumer in terms of needs, motivations and values remains the same. Furthermore, the means to unlock and extract value from the domestic market, outlined in the strategy holds true. We believe that this strategy offers a key platform from which the sector can make decisions and actions that will accelerate sector recovery across Northern Ireland.
Download the NI Domestic Tourism Strategy here.
NI Domestic Market - At a Glance