• Cyril McAree

Irish Golf Clubs To Target Business Around Tee Time

Fáilte Ireland has teamed up with Golfbreaks.com, one of the world's largest and longest established golf travel companies, to provide Irish golf businesses with the latest expertise on how to expand their offer to international golf tourists, both on and off the course.

Clubs from across the country joined an educational workshop at Fáilte Ireland headquarters today where they were provided with the latest insights into how to showcase their product to the international market, in a way that generates increased sales, by tapping into the latest consumer demands and behaviours. With the modern golf tourist increasingly expecting to be presented with packages which cover every element of the holiday experience, from top quality accommodation, food and hospitality to bespoke golfing itineraries, today’s workshop provided the Irish golf trade with the tools to effectively market to overseas golfers and drive revenue for their business.

Golf tourism is an extremely lucrative sector for Ireland with golfers being amongst the highest yielding visitors to Ireland. Over 200,000 overseas visitors take part in golf during their visit to Ireland every year, contributing almost €270 million to the economy and driving over 1.7 million bed nights right across the country. Working with Tourism Ireland, Fáilte Ireland is focused on growing these numbers by targeting those markets with greatest potential.

Martin Donnelly, Fáilte Ireland’s Golf Ireland Manager, said: “Golf plays a significant role in Irish tourism and it is important that we do all we can to support the industry to reach key overseas markets, helping to boost visitor numbers across the country. With the uncertainty caused by Brexit, it is more important than ever that we put our front foot forward in meeting the needs of the modern golf tourist and attracting visitors from a variety of markets. Golfbreaks.com are world-leaders in selling premier golfing destinations and represent very significant distribution potential in the British, US and Scandinavian markets. "Their knowledge of what stands out in the international marketplace is invaluable for Irish golf businesses looking to attract a more diverse market of customers and in today’s workshop we heard first-hand what it is that helps Golfbreaks.com to successfully pitch Ireland as a top golfing holiday. More and more, golfers are looking for holiday packages which cover their every need and this opens a massive opportunity for golf businesses to adapt their offering and drive revenue around tee time through hospitality and other activities.”

Keith Mitchell, Chief Marketing Officer at Golfbreaks.com, added: “With over 20-years of experience and dedicated teams in the UK, USA and Scandinavia, Golfbreaks.com is perfectly positioned to underpin Ireland’s appeal as a world-class golf destination. Equipped with the specialist knowledge to sell the country’s unparalleled golf offering to the specific needs of their local clients, the three international teams are well aware of the importance of keeping abreast with modern consumer habits.“The purpose of the workshop is to demonstrate how Golfbreaks.com is utilising tee time inventory and contracted accommodation to offer golfers a choice of packages and products and importantly, a simple, consolidated way to book a golf holiday that in turn generates incremental revenue for the club, accommodation and destination as a whole.“During the workshop, we demonstrated how consumer demand and behaviour is changing and in turn shape the way we need to operate as an industry. In the short term, we will also look forward to discussing what marketing opportunities to reach new golfers are available going into 2019.”

Speaking about the value of today's workshop, Jerry Foley from Carne Golf Links (West of Ireland Golf) said: “Fáilte Ireland’s workshop has provided great insights from Golfbreaks.com on the changing demands and behaviours of international golfers. We already provide a top golfing experience at West of Ireland Golf but it is vital that we ensure our offering is visible and easily bookable for international golfers across online sales channels like Golfbreaks.com. The insights from today’s workshop will ensure we maximise sales opportunities on the Golfbreaks.com platform in these markets.”

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