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‘Wild Atlantic’ Welcome’ can overcome ‘Storm Brexit’

Deirdre’s Diary

'Wild Atlantic' Welcome' can overcome 'Storm Brexit'

Just as the dark clouds of the recession had lifted and the Irish tourism industry was moving steadily along the path of recovery, now another storm is brewing in the shape of Brexit. So could Storm Brexit break us or make us stronger?

There is no doubt that there are a number of risks to Irish tourism associated with the decision of the UK to leave the European Union. They are mostly related to external factors, which are largely out of our control. Therefore as an industry, our best strategy is to manage what we can control. We must keep the pressure on our government to maintain policy decisions such as the retaining of the 9% tourism VAT rate and securing additional funding for tourism marketing and product development. Above all, our ‘Céad Míle Fáilte’ must remain at the heart of the Irish hospitality industry.

Having had our fair share of challenges in the past, Donegal as a Border visitor destination is particularly vulnerable to any change in our economic, social and political landscape. Now more than ever, we need support from all agencies to develop ‘Brand Donegal.’ All sectors of the Donegal tourism industry need to stand together with a firm focus on collaboration and destination marketing. I truly believe that our unique selling point is not only our beautiful scenery and iconic attractions, but our people. Famed for our friendliness, we in Donegal should embrace and promote our ‘Wild Atlantic Welcome’.

There has always been a strong tradition of our neighbours in Northern Ireland coming to Donegal for short breaks, for weddings, for Sunday lunch and other events. We are sure that this tradition will continue but the reality is that it is now more expensive for them due to significant changes in the currency rate of exchange. Therefore, it is important that we focus on perceived added value rather than discounting. As a family business, trying to survive during the downturn, we could not afford to match our competitors with ‘race to the bottom’ price-led offers. Therefore we had to be creative with our packages and give compelling reasons to visit our hotel, such as our magical location, our palatial suites, our delicious food and our highly personalized service.

For Harvey’s Point, it’s ‘business as usual’ and while it might be too early to measure the impact of Brexit on bookings just yet, we will continue to do what we always do, what we have always done and that is to make each and every guest feel welcome and to ensure that they have an exceptional experience. At Harvey’s Point, we don’t sell ‘two nights Bed and Breakfast and one Dinner’; we sell ‘Memories’!

Over the past twenty seven years, we have become accustomed to fluctuations in seasonality, consumer confidence, currencies and even the weather. And so too this will storm pass. In the words of Friedrich Nietzsche: “That which does not kill us makes us stronger!”

Deirdre
Deirdre

August 2016

Harvey's Point - Lough Eske
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Winter Break

Enjoy a relaxing Winter Break in one of Ireland's most romantic locations, whether it's strolling hand in hand on a country walk, relaxing in a private hot tub for two or lounge in front of one of our many log fires...
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Girly Getaway

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Sunday Sleepover

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