Tourism NI along with key local industry have participated in a top golf convention in North America, as part of the drive to grow the value of golf tourism in Northern Ireland to £50 million per year by 2020.
The North American Golf Tourism Convention, organised by the International Association of Golf Tour Operators (IAGTO), is now in its 11th year and took place in Texas Lake & Hill Country at the Horseshoe Bay Resort from 23rd – 26th June.
Over 140 tour operators from 35 countries attended the conference and Tourism NI engaged with golf tour operators through almost 300 appointments, promoting the legacy of golf and encouraging the operators to include Northern Ireland in their golf itineraries.
Industry representatives from Northern Ireland included Ardglass Golf Club, Galgorm Spa & Golf Resort, Newry Mourne and Down District Council, NI Golf Tours Ltd, The Cotter Collection, The Merchant Hotel and Travel Ireland Golf.
Speaking about the convention, Leanne Rice, Tourism NI Golf Marketing Manager said: “North America continues to develop on a global scale as a potential location for golf tourism to grow and so these conventions are vital for Tourism NI and local industry to attend. In 2018, North American golf visitors generated almost 50% of our golf tourism income and this is a key market we will continue to promote.
“In July, Northern Ireland will be hosting The Open, golf’s most prestigious and internationally recognised championship after 68 years which will be beamed live to over 600 million households worldwide. Hosting such a high profile championship will put Northern Ireland on the map as a leading golf destination and drive the growth of golf visitors from North America,” she added.
With the upcoming International Golf Travel Market in October, Tourism NI will continue to promote Northern Ireland as a golf destination to other markets.
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After a wait of nearly 70 years, the much anticipated return of The Open to Royal Portrush is just three weeks away. The 148th Open at Royal Portrush is being widely welcomed as a showcase of epic proportions, not only for the golf club but for the town, for the Causeway Coast and Glens area and for Northern Ireland as a whole. As the battle for the famous Claret Jug and title of Champion Golfer of the Year unfolds on the North Coast, the sport’s greatest players, including Northern Ireland’s home-grown heroes, will be welcomed and inspired by approximately 215,000 local, national and international golf fans, who will relish every moment with passion and pride. The setting, atmosphere and drama of The Open in Northern Ireland will be beamed into an estimated 600 million homes worldwide, promoting the best of what the region has to offer and enhancing our reputation as a premier destination for international events. The biggest sporting spectacle ever to be staged here has been more than five years in the making, and the combined economic benefit from hosting golf’s original championship will be felt for years to come. #servicedapartments #northernireland #belfast #theopen @tigerwoods @rorymcilroy @graeme_mcdowell @theopen #golf