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Inaugural Irish Travel Industry Summit on Leisure Travel and EU Package Travel Directive

Speakers at the inaugural Irish Travel Industry Summit on Friday 24th November 2017 at the Clayton Hotel Burlington Road, Dublin 4, will include Veronica Manfredi, Head of Unit E2 ‘Consumer and Marketing Law’, European Commission, on the forthcoming EU Package Travel Directive.

The Summit will be officially opened by Brian Hayes MEP and will focus on two key issues: the three leisure travel sectors that are generating increased bookings for travel agents – ocean and river cruising, long-haul holidays and adventure holidays, as well as the new EU Package Travel Directive and its pending Irish legislation.

The event will be followed in the evening by the 2017 Irish Travel Trade Awards and all Sponsors of the Awards and all others who have booked a table of 10 or 12 will be entitled to attend the Irish Travel Industry Summit free of charge.

The Summit proceedings will take place from 12 noon to 5.00pm and comprise 15-minute presentations, both sessions concluding with a Q&A with the speakers and other invited panelists.

Full details on how to register for this event will be released in early October 2017.



Brian Hayes MEP

Brian Hayes MEP, Vice Co-ordinator, Economic & Monetary Affairs Committee, European Parliament

Brian Hayes served as a member of Dail Éireann from 1997-2002 and 2007-2014 and as Leader of the Opposition in Seanad Éireann from 2002-2007. In 2011 he was appointed as Minister of State at the Departments of Finance and Public Expenditure & Reform, a position he held until his election to the European Parliament in May 2014. He has been Vice Co-ordinator on the ECON Committee since December 2016.



Andy Harmer, CLIA

Andy Harmer, Director UK & Ireland, Cruise Lines International Association

Deirdre Sweeny, Sunway

Deirdre Sweeny, General Manager Worldwide and Niche Holidays, Sunway

Mary McKenna, Tour America

Mary McKenna, Managing Director, Tour America

Travel entrepreneur Mary McKenna started Tour America in 1995 and the company has since become one of the largest tour operators in Ireland to the USA and Canada, while more recently, Mary also launched CruiseHolidays.ie, the first dedicated Irish company to sell cruising. There are offices in Dublin, Cork and Belfast.

Brian Young, G Adventures

Brian Young, Managing Director – EMEA Region, G Adventures

In March 2015, after 11 years in the accommodation-only sector, Brian Young took on a new challenge when he became Managing Director at G Adventures for the EMEA region. G Adventures is the world’s largest independently owned small group adventure company, founded by Canadian entrepreneur, Bruce Poon Tip. Brian is no stranger to entrepreneurship himself, having co-founded On Holiday Group and Holiday Taxis. His travel experience spans operations, human resources (or talent, as it is called at G Adventures), sales and marketing, and customer experience within the tour operating and online travel sectors.

John Warr, Wendy Wu Tours

John Warr, Head of Sales UK & Ireland, Wendy Wu Tours



Veronica Manfredi, European Commission

Veronica Manfredi, Head of Unit E2, European Commission

Veronica Manfredi is the Head of the Consumer and Marketing Law Unit in DG Justice and Consumers, which oversees the effective implementation of key Directives building up the EU consumer acquis (the body of common rights and obligations that is binding on all EU Member States), including the newly revised Directive on Package Travel and Linked Travel Arrangements. Key deliverables expected from her Unit in 2018 include an awareness-raising campaign linked to the entry into application of the new Package Travel Directive on 1st July 2018.

David Hodnett, Commission for Aviation Regulation

David Hodnett, Director of Legal and Deputy Commissioner, Commission for Aviation Regulation

A solicitor, David Hodnett joined the Commission in 2003. He is responsible for legal affairs, air carrier licensing, groundhandling approval, and air passenger rights.

Cormac Meehan, Irish Travel Agents Association

Cormac Meehan, President, Irish Travel Agents Association

Owner of Bundoran travel agency Meehan Travel, Cormac Meehan was elected President of the Irish Travel Agents Association in April 2016. He served on the ITAA’s Retail Council and Board at various stages in the 1990s and 2000s and has represented the Association at international forums such as the International Air Transport Association and in bilateral discussions with the Association of British Travel Agents in the UK.


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