Galway businesses commit to quality, value, and service during the Volvo Ocean Race

Failte Ireland’s Anne Melia pictured with Food for Thought’s Kenneth Walsh.

Failte Ireland’s Anne Melia pictured with Food for Thought’s Kenneth Walsh.

Almost 100 local businesses in Galway have committed themselves to Fáilte Ireland’s Quality, Value, and Service charter during the Volvo Ocean Race.

A variety of business sectors, including accommodation, food, beverage, and retail providers, have agreed to maintain high quality standards and transparent pricing. This charter guarantees a comfortable, safe, informative, and memorable experience as well as value for money for all visitors to Galway during the event.

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Leo Varadkar welcomed the initiative.

“The Volvo Ocean Race looks set to be one of the most exciting events of the year,” he said. “It is also a fantastic opportunity to promote Galway, the west of Ireland, and the whole country. The ‘Galway Guarantee’ is a great initiative to ensure that anyone visiting Volvo has a great time, and hopefully decides to return.”

The eight-day festival of sailing, sport, culture, arts, and food is expected to generate up to €80m for the local economy and bring in up to 50,000 overseas visitors as well as up to 300 international media representatives.

Head of operations in the west with Fáilte Ireland, Fiona Monaghan, said that the Volvo Ocean Race will highlight Galway as a global tourism destination.

“We want Galway and the region to be portrayed in the best positive light to visitors, media and participating teams during the Volvo Ocean Race,” she said. “The Volvo event gives us a unique opportunity to boost Galway’s deserved reputation as a unique holiday experience that will leave visitors with many wonderful memories and a desire to return.”

Earlier this year, Fáilte Ireland launched the ‘Your Volvo- Your Opportunity’ programme to ensure Galway maximises its potential during the event. The Quality, Value, and Service Charter is a cornerstone of this initiative. Fáilte Ireland has also engaged on a wide marketing and publicity programme for the domestic market, including national TV and radio advertising campaigns. There has been a comprehensive outdoor branding and local activation campaign for the Galway city area.

With the support of the Irish Hotel Federation, Restaurant Association of Ireland, Vintners Federation of Ireland, and the Galway City Business Association, all frontline tourism service providers in Galway are encouraged to get involved, providing they are registered and approved by Fáilte Ireland.

Chairman of the Galway City Business Association, Anthony Ryan, said the Volvo Ocean Race was a great opportunity for Galway.

“Galway City Business Association is delighted to participate in this initiative with Fáilte Ireland,” he said. “Each of our members who participated received Fáilte Ireland Customer Care Training over the past number of weeks, which was specifically tailored for front line retail/sales personnel for visitors to Galway during the Volvo Ocean Race and the 2012 summer season.

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank Fáilte Ireland for extending this excellent initiative out to the retail businesses in Galway and look forward to working together with the tourism sector to providing Volvo customers with a positive holiday and shopping experience over the coming weeks/months.”

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