Holidays 'booming' despite recession
Despite the gloomy economic climate, holidaymakers are still planning trips abroad this year, according to the industry.
Travel agents report "booming" business in one of the key planning and booking times of the year.
"The 250-plus travel agents around Ireland are inundated with holiday enquiries. Many of the ITAA member travel agents have taken on extra seasonal staff or increased the hours of travel consultants that were previously on a three-day week," said Pat Dawson, CEO of the Irish Travel Agents Association (ITAA).
Mr Dawson said the feedback indicated a return to using the local travel agent for professional advice, after years of booking DIY flights and hotels.
ITAA travel agents have a wealth of experience and training and can give impartial advice on a range of travel options.
"In the current climate it is reassuring to know that all ITAA member travel agents are licensed and bonded and that your money is secure.
"We hope that this trend continues and we can reassure all our customers that booking with an ITAA member travel agent represents choice and value for money."
The ITAA will be celebrating the best players in the industry with a glitzy awards ceremony in Dublin's Mansion House next Thursday, ahead of the Holiday World Show at the RDS next weekend.