Fáilte Ireland CEO said he did not “in principle” like to support accommodation providers who used their promotional work and the Ukraine crisis to hike prices and damage Ireland’s brand

The chief executive of Fáilte Ireland Paul Kelly suggested the lack of affordable hotel accommodation available at popular Irish tourist spots might be an opportunity to promote “lesser-known destinations”.

With the tourism industry dogged by complaints about value for money this summer, Mr Kelly also told colleagues he did not “in principle” like supporting tourism businesses that had used Fáilte Ireland’s work and the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine to charge prices that had caused “reputation damage” to Ireland’s brand.

The Fáilte Ireland CEO suggested they could consider targeted marketing campaigns for accommodation that was willing to provide good deals for visitors.

He also said the tourism agency would not have a “better chance to spread the love” to lesser-visited counties like Carlow, Monaghan, Tipperary, Roscommon, and others.

Mr Kelly said in emails early this summer that the most popular tourism locations were “pretty full” but that Fáilte Ireland had budget available for marketing other places.

The message said: “Is [there an] opportunity in this availability crisis to put these places on the domestic tourism map? Should we be pivoting to highly targeted campaigns for these areas.”