Public Complain About Holiday Costs

The Department of Tourism has received a large volume of complaints from tourists and members of the public about the high cost of going on holiday in Ireland.

One family wrote about how they were going to have to cancel a planned fifth trip to Ireland after being quoted CAD$2,000 (€1,510) for car rental. Another told of how the cost of renting a car for a four-day trip had more than trebled compared to a trip they had taken in 2019. 

One Irish hotel wrote to Ms Martin to say they were seeing bookings being cancelled because visitors simply could not afford car hire costs.

Complaints were also received about “price-gouging hotels” with one saying they could stay in a private suite in Las Vegas for the cost of a moderate hotel in Cork. There were also emails from Irish people saying they intended holidaying abroad instead of staycationing due to high costs.

The Department of Tourism said it had received more than 100 such representations over the summer months and under FOI agreed to release a representative sample of more than 20. A spokesman for the department said:

“It is clear that tourism businesses, as well as many other sectors, are facing cost inflation and other economic stresses including rising energy costs and increased wages in a competitive recruitment market.

“These are all factors that will find their way through to consumer prices. It is important that a balance is struck and for the industry to maintain the value for money proposition for Irish tourism in the longer-term.

“Businesses need to be able to make a sustainable trading margin but must pay attention to their pricing and how they can deliver added value. Businesses should consider both their pricing levels and the value added so that they can continue to attract customers and attract them back again and again.”