Laois top spots advertised to entice Ireland's staycation tourists


The rock of Dunamase, Timahoe Round Tower, Slieve Bloom Bike Trail and Emo Court are among the big listers being promoted around Ireland this summer as reasons to holiday in Laois.

Laois County Council has launched a joint staycation advertising campaign with neighbouring counties Offaly and Westmeath.

The top Laois sites will also appear in a new Fáilte Ireland national advertising campaign. 

“In collaboration with Fáilte Ireland we will be rolling out the “Keep Discovering” domestic marketing campaign aimed at driving domestic holidays for the remainder of the year and helping to reboot and rebuild Ireland’s tourism industry. 

The national advertising campaign went live on May 24. 

“The campaign is to encourage and remind more Irish people to discover the joy of holidaying in Ireland as they begin to reconnect with each other,” the council outlined this month at the May meeting.

They are also backing Laois tourism businesses to make the most of Irish holiday makers stuck on the island this summer.

The council is paying for online training for Laois tourism businesses in the Slieve Blooms, in association with Fáilte Ireland, called “Developing Saleable Experiences”. 

It is also encouraging businesses to apply for grants from Fáilte Ireland’s Weatherproofing & Outdoor Dining Infrastructure Scheme, and from the Additional Outdoor Infrastructure Scheme by the National Transport Authority.

More grants are being promoted to create safe accessible outdoor dining areas through the Outdoor Seating & Accessories for Tourism &Hospitality Business Scheme in association with Fáilte Ireland.

The council has also listed the staycation supports it offers through Laois Local Enterprise Office. This includes one to one expert advice with hospitality specialists Pearson Consulting, to businesses who are reopening.

Some 19 Laois tourism or hospitality businesses are taking part in a marketing programme aimed at the tourism sector.

“In consultation with Laois Tourism we have identified other relevant training that will be delivered over the coming months. This includes Digital Marketing, Social Media, Promotion of Businesses and ongoing Marketing for Businesses. Mentoring will also be provided.

“We are currently in the process of delivering a Start Your Own Tourism Business to 15 individuals who have identified opportunities as part of the Blueway experience,” the council said.

The measures were outlined in response to a motion from Cllr Mary Sweeney at the May council meeting. She had asked for an update on what the council is doing to promote domestic tourism as the country reopens.

“I wish all businesses the best as they reopen. We are focusing on domestic tourism this summer. This is an opportunity for Laois to capture a slice of the domestic market,” Cllr Sweeney said.

Her motion was seconded by the Cathaoirleach Cllr Catherine Fitzgerald.

“We have fantastic facilities in Laois. We must do everything we can in Laois to support our local tourist attractions,” she said.

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