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  • HOTELIERS MORE OPTIMISTIC ABOUT TOURISM OUTLOOK FOR 2015 | Irish Hotels Federation
    benefits are beginning to be felt outside the traditional tourism hotspots We re seeing an upturn across most rural areas which is very welcome There is a long road ahead however particularly for regions such as the North West East and Midlands where occupancy levels continue to lag at only 54 compared to a national average of 64 Mr McNally states that the 9 VAT rate continues to provide enormous support to the industry when marketing Ireland abroad as a tourism destination Combined with increased air access and the reduction of the air travel tax to zero the measure is enabling Ireland to achieve impressive growth in overseas visitor numbers This is directly feeding into increased confidence on the ground with 89 of hoteliers planning to invest in refurbishment and product development this year and 71 planning to increase their investment in marketing However Mr McNally notes that a significant number of hotels will not achieve profitability in 2015 He says Much of the sector continues to operate from a low revenue base following the recession which means the high cost of servicing overhanging debt remains a serious challenge This is weighing heavily on many hotels with some 34 saying they remain concerned about the viability of their business notwithstanding the upturn in Irish tourism Challenges Business costs The cost of doing business in Ireland remains a major challenge with hoteliers citing excessive local authority rates as the single most pressing issue stifling cost competitiveness within the sector This is followed by high labour costs utility costs and subdued consumer confidence Overhanging debt Total hotel indebtedness is estimated at 5 3bn with up to 1 4bn required in restructuring to bring hotel debt to a sustainable level The cost of servicing the interest alone means many hotels will not break

    Original URL path: http://www.ihf.ie/content/hoteliers-more-optimistic-about-tourism-outlook-2015 (2016-02-07)
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  • HOTELIERS CALL ON GOVERNMENT TO TACKLE PUBLIC SECTOR CHARGES | Irish Hotels Federation
    authorities must do more to achieve cost efficiencies and a substantial amount of these savings must be passed on to businesses in the form of reduced rates and charges to increase competitiveness says Mr McNally A more focused approach by the Government is also required at a national level to reduce costs imposed by state owned agencies in the areas of energy water and licensing While there have been some token improvements reforms have not gone far enough This is a missed opportunity for the economy and needs to be addressed urgently 30 Reduction in Local Authority Rates Needed Mr McNally states that the largest single cost that hoteliers have no control over is local authority rates with many hoteliers being levied rates of up to 3 000 per bedroom and average local authority rates equating to 1 500 per bedroom regardless of occupancy rates It is effectively a stealth tax on tourism equal to approximately 7 per room per night before all other costs and taxes are taken into account Two out of every three hotels are still waiting to have their rates reviewed by the Commissioner of Valuation despite the 2001 Valuation Act having come into force over a decade ago Mr McNally says Those premises that have had their rates reviewed saw reductions of over 30 In light of this we re calling on the Government to instruct the remaining local authorities to introduce the same reduction as an interim measure pending the completion of revised valuations across the rest of the country The hotels sector continues to bear the brunt of a badly designed system for funding local Government that sees hotels and guesthouses make a disproportionate contribution through local authority rates says Mr McNally Some of the worst cases of inequitable rates exist in rural

    Original URL path: http://www.ihf.ie/content/hoteliers-call-government-tackle-public-sector-charges (2016-02-07)
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  • HOTELIERS REJECTS JLC SYSTEM AS OUTDATED AND COUNTERPRODUCTIVE | Irish Hotels Federation
    JLC SYSTEM AS OUTDATED AND COUNTERPRODUCTIVE JLCs jeopardise job creation and should be assigned to history says IHF President Thursday 5th February 2015 The Irish Hotels Federation IHF today criticised the Joint Labour Committee JLC system as an outdated mechanism that introduces counterproductive inefficiencies and rigidities into the Irish labour market It stated that its reintroduction would jeopardise job creation by imposing additional costs on the sector at a time when payroll is already the largest element of costs for hotels accounting for over 40 of turnover one of the highest levels in Europe IHF President Stephen McNally states that JLCs imposed additional needless layers of bureaucracy at the expense of employment creation They have lost all relevance since the introduction of the National Minimum Wage Act which has provided Ireland with one of the highest gross minimum wage rates in Europe and goes hand in hand with over 40 other separate pieces of extensive employment legislation including the Working Time Directive JLCs were found to be unconstitutional in 2011 for good reason and should have been consigned to history at that stage says Mr McNally Since 2011 tourism businesses have seen a significant reduction in red tape and bureaucracy

    Original URL path: http://www.ihf.ie/content/hoteliers-rejects-jlc-system-outdated-and-counterproductive (2016-02-07)
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  • HOTELIERS WARN MANDATORY CALORIE-LABELLING ENTIRELY INAPPROPRIATE FOR HOTELS | Irish Hotels Federation
    to feature your Hotel on our site Click HERE HOTELIERS WARN MANDATORY CALORIE LABELLING ENTIRELY INAPPROPRIATE FOR HOTELS Back 05 02 2015 HOTELIERS WARN MANDATORY CALORIE LABELLING ENTIRELY INAPPROPRIATE FOR HOTELS Thursday 5th February 2015 The Irish Hotels Federation IHF today warned against the introduction of mandatory labelling of calories on menus in hotels and guesthouses Commenting on the Government decision to implement a mandatory system for restaurants and other food outlets IHF President Stephen McNally said that the scheme must remain voluntary for hotels and guesthouses Mr McNally expressed concerns about any adoption of an indiscriminate one size fits all approach to mandatory calorie labelling which he said would be unworkable for hotels and guesthouses many of whose menus change on a daily basis reflecting the use of locally sourced produce and seasonally available ingredients It would have the effect of stifling creativity in food businesses that are not part of the underlying health issue He said Our members are very concerned that the proposed calorie labelling scheme does not take account of the challenges faced by hotels and guesthouses whose menus constantly change While such a scheme would be would be appropriate for certain food service establishments it

    Original URL path: http://www.ihf.ie/content/hoteliers-warn-mandatory-calorie-labelling-entirely-inappropriate-hotels (2016-02-07)
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  • Hoteliers urge Government to safeguard Aer Lingus' Heathrow Landing Slots | Irish Hotels Federation
    feature your Hotel on our site Click HERE Hoteliers urge Government to safeguard Aer Lingus Heathrow Landing Slots Back 16 01 2015 HOTELIERS URGE GOVERNMENT TO SAFEGUARD AER LINGUS HEATHROW LANDING SLOTS Heathrow slots are of critical strategic importance to Irish Tourism The Irish Hotels Federation IHF today urged the Government to do everything in its power to ensure the long term retention of the Aer Lingus take off and landing slots at Heathrow for routes to and from Irish airports Stephen McNally President of the IHF expressed concern at the prospect of the 23 slots being re allocated to other routes following a potential takeover of the airline In light of the recent offers by International Airlines Group Mr McNally states The Heathrow slots are of critical strategic importance to Ireland and the longterm prospects of our national tourism product Any agreement that fails to safeguard these slots for Irish routes would have serious long term implications for Irish tourism and air connectivity into the country and particularly the regions It is imperative that the Government secures contractual rights to determine the use of these slots as part of a possible sale of the State s interest in the

    Original URL path: http://www.ihf.ie/content/hoteliers-urge-government-safeguard-aer-lingus-heathrow-landing-slots (2016-02-07)
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  • Hotels Barometer - 86% of Hotels Seeing Increase Business Levels | Irish Hotels Federation
    parties are either the same or better than last year Ireland is now firmly back on the global tourism map following two years of impressive growth This is good news for the economy as a whole says Stephen McNally President of the IHF However many rural areas have not fared as well given their over dependence on local consumer spending and the difficulty encouraging visitors to venture outside the main tourism hotspots This is a major challenge given the vital contribution tourism makes to local economies The Hotel Barometer shows that the upturn is contributing to further jobs growth with two out of three 66 hotels and guesthouses taking on additional staff in 2014 while 86 say the Government s decision to retain the 9 tourism VAT rate will assist them to take on further staff in 2015 The measure which brought Ireland more closely in line with the tourism VAT rates of competitors across the rest of Europe has contributed to the creation of 33 000 jobs in the hospitality and tourism industry since its introduction in 2011 As a whole Irish tourism now supports approximately 205 000 jobs equivalent to 11 of total employment in the country and accounting for 4 of gross national product Mr McNally notes that according to Fáilte Ireland tourism is expected to contribute 6 5 billion in revenues to the economy and generate 1 9 billion in taxes for the Government this year He says Irish tourism has shown itself to be an excellent investment for the country However it is one that we need to nurture if it is to continue to deliver returns Despite constrained resources our industry has significantly upped its game on the marketing front with targeted programmes from Fáilte Ireland and Tourism Ireland achieving strong cut through in reinvigorating our tourism brand and Ireland s image as a holiday destination We have without doubt become more imaginative in developing our tourism product and in giving holidaymakers new and compelling reasons to visit Excellent examples include the already hugely successful Wild Atlantic Way and the East South East Heritage Trail due to be launched next year However since the downturn Government funding for tourism marketing and product development has been cut back substantially Our tourism bodies have been operating under very constrained budgets which puts the long term sustainable growth of our industry at risk says Mr McNally There is now a pressing need to ensure sufficient funding is allocated At the very least this would require funding to be returned to 2012 levels if we are to maximise tourism s growth potential Mr McNally notes that while hotel revenues remain significantly below those achieved six years ago increased confidence in the sector is feeding into greater levels of investment by hoteliers Some 86 plan to increase investment in refurbishment and product development in 2015 while 77 plan to increase their investment in marketing Market Overview Breakdown Island of Ireland Compared to this time last year business levels are

    Original URL path: http://www.ihf.ie/content/hotels-barometer-86-hotels-seeing-increase-business-levels (2016-02-07)
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  • HOTELIERS CALL FOR MORE AMBITIOUS GROWTH TARGETS FOR IRISH TOURISM | Irish Hotels Federation
    deliver returns for the economy He stated that since the downturn the funding allocation for tourism marketing and product development has been cut back substantially and tourism bodies have been operating under very constrained budgets This situation puts the long term sustainable growth of Irish tourism at risk There is now a pressing need to ensure that sufficient funding is allocated We are calling for funding to be returned to 2012 levels at a minimum in order to maximise tourism s growth potential The Government recently set out its plans to grow overseas visitors to 10 million per annum by 2025 which would result 5 billion in annual revenues from overseas visitors and create an additional 50 000 jobs says Mr Fenn While we welcome these targets they should be more ambitious given the wider outlook for tourism in Europe With additional resources we believe Tourism Ireland could be well placed to meet these targets by 2020 Mr Fenn said that Irish tourism is recovering and is now on a much firmer footing with overseas visitors up some nine per cent this year and expected to reach 7 3 million by year end This builds on last year s strong performance during the Gathering and means tourism is now achieving growth across all key markets with particular successes in North America Britain and Continental Europe The outlook continues to be positive into 2015 with a further 6 growth in visitor numbers expected next year bringing the total to over 7 7 million and delivering almost 4 billion to the economy excluding carrier receipts There is cause for optimism on the domestic front following years of subdued consumer confidence in Ireland Though fragile the sector is seeing signs of an upturn in the home market with people gradually starting to take

    Original URL path: http://www.ihf.ie/content/hoteliers-call-more-ambitious-growth-targets-irish-tourism (2016-02-07)
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  • HOTELIERS SUPPORT IRFU INTENTION TO BID FOR 2023 RUGBY WORLD CUP | Irish Hotels Federation
    IHF welcomes the decision by the IRFU to submit an all Ireland bid to host the 2023 Rugby World Cup The IHF states that a successful bid would see hundreds of thousands of additional overseas visitors come to Ireland providing an economic boost for local businesses including hotels and guesthouses Stephen McNally President of the IHF says that tourism businesses would fully support the bid and ensure a truly memorable

    Original URL path: http://www.ihf.ie/content/hoteliers-support-irfu-intention-bid-2023-rugby-world-cup (2016-02-07)
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