Fáilte Ireland is the National Tourism Development Authority of the Republic of Ireland. This authority was established under the National Tourism Development Authority Act of 2003 and replaces and builds upon the functions of Bord Fáilte, its predecessor organization. Fáilte Ireland's current CEO is Redmond O'Donoghue.
Being composed of an Irish word and an English word, the meaning of the name of this organization is a little unclear. Although the enabling Act mentions only that the "...Authority may, for operational purposes, describe itself as Fáilte Ireland", the Department of Arts, Sport and Tourism refers to the authority in Irish as Fáilte Éireann. This suggests the intended meaning is "Ireland's Welcome".
In reality, Bord Fáilte meant 'Welcome Board', 'fáilte' being a greeting in Gaeilge that means 'welcome'. Fáilte Ireland cannot be translated as it is a brand name.
The goal of Fáilte Ireland is to provide strategic and practical support in developing and sustaining Ireland as a high-quality and competitive tourist destination. Fáilte Ireland works in partnership with tourism interests to support the industry in its efforts to be more profitable and to help individual tourist enterprises enhance their performance.
Its activities fall into four areas:
Tourism Marketing: provides marketing support and a range of cost-efficient promotional opportunities for Irish product providers, marketing groups, tour operators, handling agents, and other tourism interests as well as visitor services to consumers.
Fáilte Ireland's "Festivals and Cultural Events Initiative" and "Sports Tourism Initiative" fall under this heading.
Training Services: provides education and advice for people working in the tourism industry including training unemployed adults and assisting them back into the workforce.
Fáilte Ireland have recently launched a new campaign which aims to encourage and support young people into choosing a career in the tourism sector.
The campaign is called 'Pick Tourism' and it ulitises social networking sites such as Bebo in an effort to reach out to young people.
Product Development: provides support for selective capital investment in tourism product through grant-aid and tax incentive schemes and encourages new and innovative products and areas of service.
Research and Statistics: provides overviews of tourism performance and profiles all aspects of tourism development to provides a knowledge base to guide industry development and services.