GoIreland.com Reports Continued Online Tourism Booking Growth
Gulliver Ireland, Ireland's leading cost effective provider of tourism information and reservations which is part of FEXCO AllTravel, announced today (Monday, 10th December 2007) that German tourist Dieter Böhm, from Hannover, has won the GoIreland.com Photography Awards 2007.
Dieter Böhm's photograph of Wexford's Johnstown Castle beat thousands of amateur tourist photographer entries from around the world. John Hinde Ireland will reproduce the winning photograph as an original postcard and distribute it throughout the country. The Judging Panel selected photographs by tourists from Canada and France as the two runners-up.
Held in association with John Hinde Ireland, the international amateur tourist photography competition aims to showcase Ireland and its tourism qualities. Now in its third year, the Awards invited Irish holidaymakers and visiting tourists to capture an image of Ireland's beautiful landscape that characterises the country's tourism qualities.
Entrants were encouraged to use John Hinde's series of famous postcards and iconic images of Ireland years ago as inspiration. This year's competition received a record number of entries.
Meanwhile, the Gulliver Ireland-owned GoIreland.com and its affiliate network reported online bookings growth of 13 per cent to date this year. More than 76,000 tourism bookings were made online (representing almost 320,000 bednights), which were valued at €15.5 million. Average booking value increased to €203.38 from €196.62 compared with the same period last year.
GoIreland.com is the premier online window for Irish tourism businesses and the leading consumer site for tourist information and reservations. Nearly half (45 per cent) of GoIreland.com's bookings were domestically sourced, continuing the strong growth in online domestic bookings over the past few years. 17 per cent of bookings came from England and a further 12 per cent from the USA. Northern Ireland and France also made the Top 5 country booking source list for 2007.
The hotel sector secured 54 per cent of GoIreland.com's tourism bookings, while the B&B (32 per cent share) and guesthouse (9 per cent share) sectors also benefited.
Dublin (29 per cent share), the South West (16 per cent share) and the West (15 per cent share) were the three regions to secure the most bookings so far this year. GoIreland.com achieved a consistent 18 per cent growth in traffic over the past quarter and was the most booked Gulliver-powered website last year.
Dieter Böhm's winning photograph of Johnstown Castle features the castle reflected in a lake and surrounded by vibrant colours of the ornamental grounds. The drifting clouds overhead perfectly match the shadows of the trees in the foreground.
The two runners-up were a view of Castlegregory, Co. Kerry, entitled 'Kerry Sunset' by Pierre Leclerc from Canada and 'Falaises 2', a photograph of the famous Cliffs of Moher in Clare by French tourist, Jean Luc Ogereau.
The winning images can be viewed by visiting here. Dieter Böhm wins a luxury holiday in Ireland with flights, hotel accommodation and car rental included. The runners-up receive a selection of short breaks.
Speaking at today's announcement, Dick Spring, Gulliver Ireland's Chairman, said, "The popularity and international scope of the Awards were underlined this year by a record number of entries and huge variety of visiting tourist nationalities that entered the competition. Its raison d'être is to promote and display Ireland's tourism qualities and we are particularly grateful for Tourism Ireland's assistance in helping us promote the Awards abroad this year."
John McCreery, Sales Director, John Hinde Ltd, said, "John Hinde is delighted to be associated with the GoIreland.com Photography Awards again this year. The submissions were of a very high standard and really reflected the beautiful landscapes we still have in Ireland. Congratulations to all who entered and especially to the winning entries."