Efforts are underway to kickstart domestic tourism here in Clare.
The Burren Ecotourism Network has launched a recovery programme, which it hopes will encourage people from across Ireland to holiday in this county, particularly in the Autumn months.
Some businesses in the hospitality sector have reported healthy bookings for the summer.
With a lack of international travel this year, so-called staycations will be vitally important to local hotels, attractions and visitor experiences.
And while it’s unlikely that the domestic trade will cover the fall-off in international business, there is some optimism.
Members of the Burren Ecotourism Network are reporting huge interest from people all over the island from people who want to come to Clare this year.
Since the start of the COVID crisis in March, the members have collaborated in delivering a regional response to the crisis, including lobbying for vital supports for the Tourism Sector and other initiatives including Burren holiday competitions and gift vouchers.
CEO of Burren Ecotourism Network Jarlath O’Dwyer says businesses in the hospitality sector have reported healthy bookings in the self-catering trade for the months of July and August, though B&B bookings are down.
He outlines what they’re hoping to achieve in the coming months.
Meanwhile, there is a push for government supports from the sector, with calls growing even louder after the UK government yesterday announced a short-term reduction of the VAT rate for the sector to 5%.
Here, the new government is planning to unveil a jobs stimulus package this month.
George Quinn, whose family runs Hylands Hotel in Ballyvaughan, says its importance cannot be overstated.