A 42 per cent increase in ‘staycation’ bookings in Galway is a further indication of the importance of the tourism industry for the city and county, according to Labour Deputy Derek Nolan.
Deputy Nolan was referring to survey from online travel agent ebookers.ie, which showed that many Irish destinations enjoyed a significant increase in the numbers of Irish people holidaying there.
“Galway saw a 42 per cent increase in holiday bookings from Irish people and this is very positive and to be welcomed. Galway’s performance was especially strong given that we did not see the same historic decline in numbers as other Irish destinations,” said the Galway West TD.
Deputy Nolan said that the figures showed that Galway’s tourism industry was well established and not as susceptible to external factors as much as other destinations.
“Our tourism industry is very strong and very valuable to us and must be protected as much as possible,” he said.
“This must mean that any initiative designed to protect and increase tourism activity and jobs in the county must be supported. This includes the extension of the nine per cent VAT rate for the industry,” he added.
Deputy Nolan said that the many festivals that are run throughout the summer in Galway were a major attraction to potential tourists. Sustainable funding for these events must continue to be forthcoming, he said.
“Galway must remain a first class tourist destination and I will continue to push for measures that safeguards this status, and the thousands of livelihoods it supports,” said Deputy Nolan.