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28 May 2022

'Significant impact' of Covid-19 on travel last year revealed

Full impact of Covid-19 on travel last year revealed

Overnight trips in Ireland in 2021 were halved due to the Covid-19 pandemic, with international trips even more severely impacted with a drop of 75% due to travel restrictions. 

Figures released by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) reveal the full impact that the pandemic, and the consequences of varying levels of restrictions, had on travel both domestically and internationally.

Irish residents took 5.7 million domestic overnight trips in 2021, a decrease of 27% when compared with the same period in 2020.

Total expenditure on domestic trips in 2021 amounted to €1.3 billion with those on holidays spending €998 million of this, while those visiting friends or relatives spent €176 million.

In the fourth quarter of 2021 Irish residents took 1.6 million domestic overnight trips, which represented an increase of 40% when compared with the same period in 2020.

There were almost 2.3 million outbound overnight trips undertaken by Irish residents in 2021, which represented a slight decrease of 4% when compared with 2020

Commenting on the release, Brendan Curtin, statistician, said: “The figures provide information on the significant impact of COVID-19 on domestic and international travel by Irish residents throughout 2021. In 2021, domestic overnight trips decreased by fifty percent (-51.3%) and international trips were down by seventy five percent (-75.7%), when compared with 2019.

"Irish residents took 46% fewer domestic overnight holiday trips and business trips were down by 70% in 2021 when compared with two years earlier. For outbound trips the decrease was greater, with both holiday and business trips taken by Irish residents in 2021 down 81% when compared with 2019," he said. 

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