TORONTO — Royal Irish Tours (RIT) celebrated St. Patrick’s Day this year in the best possible way – in Ireland, on a FAM, with a group of travel advisors from The Travel Agent Next Door.
The seven-night trip, which departed before the holiday, marked the first time Ireland has hosted a fam from North America since the start of the pandemic. Advisors were able to visit such iconic locales s Belfast, Donegal, Galway and Dublin.
“Everywhere we went, we really did get the ‘Cead Mile Failte’ (the 100,000 welcomes) that Ireland is known for,” said Jonathan Sargeant, Sales Manager at RIT. “Everyone was so friendly and just delighted to see people back visiting from overseas. For us, it was so nice to be able to host this trip and show the TTAND advisors a little piece of that famous Irish hospitality.”
Topher Campbell, Training Coordinator at The Travel Agent Next Door, who confirmed that this also marked TTAND’s first fam in over two years, added: “From the moment we arrived in Dublin, our partner travel agents were able to see first-hand that Ireland is open and excited to welcome Canadians. Royal Irish Tours is a fantastic partner for our partner travel agents. Travel agents will have peace of mind knowing that their clients will have a wonderful experience.”
Participating TTAND agents were quick to share their positive experience and praise RIT for a successful fam.
Mandy Armstrong from The Travel Agent Next Door in Brockville, ON, said: “RIT treated us to experiences I’ve spent a lifetime dreaming about, and Ireland was everything I had hoped it would be. I’m excited to help my clients have the same experience!”
Judith Coates, Co-Founder of the Association of Canadian Independent Travel Advisors (ACITA), added: “Going to Ireland with RIT Vacations gave me a better awareness of the rich culture, the beautiful people and the warm hospitality that Ireland has to offer. I now have a clear understanding of why RIT is the best choice for my clients when they are planning a trip to Ireland.”
Ireland has lifted all travel restrictions on March 6, 2022. Visitors are no longer required to provide proof of vaccination or recovery, take a COVID-19 test for entry or complete a passenger locator form to travel. Coupled with Canada’s removal of pre-arrival COVID-19 testing for fully vaccinated travellers arriving in Canada, RIT is cautiously optimistic for the upcoming touring season, which will begin on May 2, 2022.
Double vaccination will remain mandatory for RIT guests joining coach and sightseeing tours in 2022.