Tourism Survey shows that friendly nature of the West Kerry people is key factor in visitors’ decision to holiday in the area

3 March, 2011

min read

A survey on tourists visiting to the West Kerry area last year illustrates that the key factors influencing visitors’ decision to holiday in the area were identified as ‘Friendly and Hospitable People’ (95.6%) and ‘Beautiful Scenery (93.5%).

The West Kerry Gaeltacht Tourism Survey 2010, which was commissioned by Údarás na Gaeltachta and launched today (Thursday 3rd March 2011), documents the findings of a visitor survey carried out during 2010 where 600 face-to-face interviews were conducted with visitors to the West Kerry area during June, July and August of 2010.

The results, compiled by the Department of Hotel, Catering and Tourism at the Institute of Technology Tralee (ITT), also finds that:

  • The overall satisfaction levels with the tourism product in the area were very high with 98.2% of respondents stating that they would return to the area again for a holiday.
  • Over half (50.8%) of all respondents were on a first visit to the area, exceeding the national figure of 37%.
  • The largest international market of visitors to the area is the U.S.A. with 17.6%.
  • The visitor market from Great Britain accounted for 15.1% of total visitors, a decline of almost 9% when compared with the 2004 County Kerry Tourism Research study.
  • 81% of respondents were aware that they were in an Irish speaking region.
  • Advice from ‘a friend or relative’ was identified as the most important information/referral source for respondents with 45.1%.
  • 24% of all overnighting visitors used on-line resources to book their accommodation.

Speaking at the launch today, Mícheál Ó Scanaill, Chairperson of the Regional Committee of Údarás na Gaeltachta said, “The report will be a valuable source of information to everybody involved in the tourism industry in the area locally. The information it contains will act as a key influencer in determining investment priorities in the future for grant-aid and other government supports which are administered by those State agencies which have a shared responsibility for the development of the sector”.

The latest tourism statistics available from Fáilte Ireland show that in 2010 the tourism sector was estimated to be worth €4.6 billion nationally with 5.6 million foreign visitors, of which over 700,000 visited Co. Kerry and spent in the region of €160 million.

According to Éamonn Ó Neachtain, Regional Manager of Údarás na Gaeltachta. “The tourism sector is hugely important to the local economy in West Kerry and indeed the whole of County Kerry. It is vitally important that we have the most up to date information about tourists visiting here, their behavioural patterns, expectations and requirements. This information will assist the tourism industry in targeting key markets and developing new products based on visitor requirements”.

The survey questionnaire included questions on visitor profiles, reasons for choosing the area for their holiday and qualitative questions about their satisfaction ratings with accommodation, food and other attractions in the area. The survey was conducted with the help of FÁS community employment participants operating under the auspices of Údarás na Gaeltachta, and with assistance from Fáilte Ireland.

Copies of the report are available from the Údarás na Gaeltachta office at 066 9150100 or