Fáilte Ireland will this week help to showcase Ireland as a top golfing destination through its support of the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open.

Golf tourism is a hugely lucrative sector for Ireland and one that Fáilte Ireland, as the National Tourism Development Authority, is working to grow across key markets.

Speaking about the importance of golf tourism and hosting events like this, Head of Commercial Development at Fáilte Ireland, Paul Mockler said:

“This is a very lucrative sector as golf visitors typically spend three times more than the average tourist, with most of their spend going directly into local economies. Vitally, the spread of golf courses around the country offers a significant opportunity to drive tourism growth outside of the better-known tourist hotspots –a key focus of our work at Fáilte Ireland.

“At Fáilte Ireland we work extensively with the Irish golf industry supported by our colleagues in Tourism Ireland to grow the country’s share of international visitors in this space. We’re delighted to support the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open which provides unrivalled promotion of Lahinch as both a golf and visitor destination. To make sure we leverage the international profile this event commands, we are hosting the US Golf Channel team in Lahinch and at other key golf locations and courses along the Wild Atlantic Way, particularly in the area north of Galway. Through this coverage, millions of golf fans in the USA – which is a huge market for golf tourism – will see a showcase of Ireland’s golf offering and local areas. Fáilte Ireland is also providing a platform for over 30 golf businesses from every corner of the country to directly engage with the 100,000 overseas and domestic visitors at the event.”

This year’s event is the first time the US Golf Channel will set up a live studio at the Irish Open and broadcast promotional packages featuring a number of golf courses and locations along the Wild Atlantic Way and north of Galway.

Alison Metcalfe, Tourism Ireland’s Head of North America, added:

“We’re delighted that the NBC Golf Channel will broadcast from this week’s Irish Open at Lahinch and along the Wild Atlantic Way, bringing our message about the world-class golf on offer here to a huge audience of potential American golf holidaymakers. Tourism Ireland has an extensive programme of promotions under way this year, to encourage more Americans to consider a golfing vacation on the island of Ireland. Our message is that the island of Ireland offers American golfers the complete package – with some of the very best golf in the world, stunning scenery and the warmest of welcomes.”

The Dubai Duty Free Irish Open event kicks off today at Lahinch and will run until Sunday 7th July, attracting up to 100,000 golf enthusiasts from around Ireland and overseas.