The Portuguese National Tourist Office is expecting further growth from Ireland in 2017, thanks to increased capacity on routes to Lisbon and Faro, as well as a key new route from Dublin to Porto, recently announced by Aer Lingus.
With figures just released for September 2016 for the Portuguese Tourist Board, Portugal is yet again reporting a bumper year in tourism with overall figures for 2016 to date showing an increase in visitors of 9.2%, with bed nights at 1.151 million also up 8.7%. These figures are seen as a continued positive upward four-year trend for Portugal following on from 8.5% growth for the same period last year. Irish visitors to Portugal spent €257 million, an increase of 13.8%.
In terms of the Irish and UK markets, Ireland is up 10.3% year-on-year, with 235,600 guests, and the UK market including Northern Ireland is up 11.7% with 1,554,200 guests. These figures put the UK as the top market for Portugal, with Ireland in ninth position.
Airports in Ireland are confirming high fill-rates on Portugal departures to Faro and, of course, the Algarve is yet again Ireland’s favorite destination in Portugal, with an 8.7% growth rate. Faro also offers access to the Alentejo region of Portugal.