Consumer Sentiment Analysis

Tourism NI’s Consumer Sentiment Analysis gives in depth analysis on consumer confidence, propensity to travel and consumer concerns.

 Family enjoying a stroll around the gardens at Montalto Estate.

Tourism NI has recently completed Wave 10 of its consumer sentiment research in Northern Ireland (NI) and Republic of Ireland (ROI), to monitor consumer attitudes towards travel in NI and elsewhere, and help inform how current issues, e.g. cost of living, have impacted on consumer behaviour and travel intentions.

Fieldwork was undertaken in December 2022 with a robust, nationally representative sample from both markets. Results presented below are based on a sample of 750 adults in ROI and 400 adults in NI.

NI Experience 2022

  • Results point to continued high levels of ROI and domestic visitor volumes in 2022, with over 9 in 10 respondents in each market saying their trip matched or exceeded expectations.

Consumer Mood

  • Anxiety levels relating to Covid-19 remain low, with the majority of consumers in both markets believing that the worst has passed.
  • Comfort levels generally remain high for engaging in a range of indoor and outdoor activities.
  • When thinking ahead to holidays planned for 2023, excitement and optimism were the top emotions expressed in each market.

Travel Intentions 2023

  • NI and ROI consumers’ travel intentions indicate a generally steady performance for short breaks in the first quarter of 2023. Competition from ROI and GB remains strong however, with a significant increase in those considering a longer break abroad also evident.
  • Relaxation is the most common motivator for intended NI trips, with the majority planning a laid-back holiday.
  • For island of Ireland trips approximately one in three NI and ROI consumers indicated that they still have a tendency to book a little closer to the date than they would have before Covid.
  • Of those ROI dog owners planning to take an NI trip, almost 6 in 10 said they would bring their dog with them if they could. This figure is even higher for NI residents.

Cost of Living / Value for Money

  • Compared to the previous research in October 2022, expectations of being significantly negatively affected by cost-of-living increases have reduced in both NI and ROI, although 9 out of 10 still expect to be negatively affected in the coming months.
  • When it comes to cancelling or reducing spend on staycations, a slight softening is evident. While spend on eating out, going to pubs and events will likely see a reduction, the number in both markets saying they won’t reduce spend on these things has also increased since the October research.
  • The proportion of NI residents planning to reduce spending on leisure day trips remains high but has declined compared to the October survey wave.
  • While there is still a sense of worry about the cost-of-living, many respondents are still relatively optimistic, with over half of ROI consumers (53%) and 46% of NI consumers saying they "intend to keep doing things I enjoy in 2023 even if the impact of cost-of-living increases is a concern”.
  • In line with previous research waves, both NI and ROI consumers continue to regard NI as better value for money than GB and ROI.


Consumer Sentiment 2023

Consumer Sentiment 2022

Consumer Sentiment 2021


Consumer Sentiment 2020