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Visitors to NI from Republic ‘up by almost 50%’

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Visitors to Northern Ireland from the Republic have soared

Northern Ireland has seen visitor numbers from the Republic rising by almost half in the space of a year, new figures show.

The latest official stats show overnight trips rose by 46%, while spending was up by £86.5m.

There were 1.3 million trips taken by visitors from the Republic during 2023.

“These trips translated into almost three million overnight stays and spend of more than £267m, an increase of 48% on the numbers recorded in 2022,” Tourism NI said.

“The Central Statistics Office (CSO) data showed that all types of tourism grew rapidly in 2023 – holiday trips, visiting friends and relatives, and business tourism.”

Research conducted by Tourism NI has found that the vast majority of Republic of Ireland visitors to NI had their expectations matched or exceeded. “The range of things to see and do, the quality of food and drink, and the warmth of the welcome were rated most highly,” it said.

Tourism NI chief executive, John McGrillen said: “These results are exceptional, especially given the tough economic climate and the increased levels of competition from other destinations. We are clearly reaping the rewards of additional investment in new visitor experiences in recent years, and increased marketing and promotion in the Republic of Ireland.

“Our research shows that every part of NI is benefiting from this investment and the very strong growth in visitor numbers and spend which has resulted from it. While there continue to be challenges for the industry, these results demonstrate tourism’s growth potential as we look to the future”.

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