Holiday World Show Dublin, which took place this weekend for its first edition in three years, saw in excess of 30,000 people make their way to the RDS Simmonscourt for personalised expert travel advice, show-only deals and tips on the top places to travel in 2023.
Maria Hourican, CEO, Business Exhibitions Ltd, organisers of Holiday World Show Dublin, said: “Our 2023 show has been a true return-to-form, with visitor numbers meeting our expectations. Exhibitors have reported a considerable increase in business as consumer spending returns to near pre-pandemic levels and customers are booking their holidays for the year ahead.”
At the Holiday World Show 2023, the DiscoverIreland Home Holiday Pavilion proved very popular among visitors, with 50 participating exhibitors showcasing a range of Irish destinations & breaks. Dedicated areas for Cork and Northern Ireland offered guests a depth and breadth to the options for booking a trip closer to home.
The stands of Abu Dhabi, Taiwan and Slovakia were a big attraction for many visitors and the ever popular Spanish Tourism stand was the largest exhibit at Holiday World Show. A renewed focus on camping, sustainable travel and cruises resulted in a diverse range of trips and getaways being booked across the weekend.
Exhibitors from afar were delighted with the level of interest from visitors, with Bláithín O’Donnell of Air Canada stating that the show remains “a highlight of the sales calendar for Air Canada; nowhere else do you get so many people in one venue, all interested in holidays.”
Local exhibitors were shared this sentiment, with Shane Smyth of Bundoran Tourism Office expressing that “it was a really great weekend, with interested visitors who genuinely want to holiday at home. We look forward to welcoming them to Donegal.”
Industry heads offered their insight into the successes of Holiday World Show 2023, with Paul Hackett, President of the Irish Travel Agents Association saying: “This has been a tremendous show for Holiday World Show and the travel trade. This weekend comes at an opportunistic time of year, as people are beginning to plan their holidays. Bookings are up this year, showing confidence in the country and our economy. The most popular trends for holidays this year are short haul, soft adventure holidays, active holidays and cruise holidays, with an increased interest in trips to exotic, far-flung destinations as the world opens up. The show really is a wonderful way for travel professionals to meet with the public and promote their destinations and offers.”
John Spollen, of Cassidy Travel echoed previous statements, saying that: “Holiday World Show 2023 has been a hugely encouraging start to the year; it is evident from the number of attendees and trips booked with us that people are excited and confident to travel again. We have never seen such a level of interest and engagement with the public before, and we look forward to making their travel plans a reality.”
Other Holiday World Show 2023 highlights included performances from the country singer-songwriter Declan Nerney, traditional Irish musicians and Ostroha – Slovakian Folk Dance Group, with a dedicated Kids Zone, that hosted the Aer Lingus art competition for young aspiring artists.