The predestined divorce of Britain to the European Union might indeed have detrimental effects on tourism revenue. Specifically, it may backfire on the Southern parliamentary Republic of Ireland, which relies on the monetary value of the Euro, as well as both EU and British relations.
The umbrella group for the tourism sector in the Republic of Ireland, The Irish Tourism Industry Confederation (Itic) has calculated that as a by-product of a “doomsday” Brexit (on the event that it is completed with a no-deal squabble between both parties) the sector could lose up to €260 million in revenue & additional cost and over half a billion Euro in the years to come.
Considering that Southern Ireland receives more than a third of overseas visitors from Britain, the aftermath of Brexit would cut off their tourist supply with influence from the aviation sector, as well as the devaluation of British currency, which would make Ireland more expensive for holidaymakers and their consumers. According to Itic, 75% of British tourists fly across the Irish Sea, while 1/5th of US visitors and 30% of additional long-haul nationalities transit through Britain on their path through the Republic.
Furthermore, a no-deal Brexit situation would constrict access of peoples and goods/services at the physical geographic borderline between the Free-State Republic and its Northern UK counterpart. Obviously, this is menacing news to the tourism sector, and according to an Itic bulletin, it “would present a real threat to the current free flow of visitors and residents crossing between the two jurisdictions and negate Tourism Ireland’s all-island marketing strategy and investment”. Such inhibitions, caused by the rupture of UK- EU relations, might even discourage the 1.3 million Irish visitors that travel south each year. What was before an easy ‘domestic’ commute from Belfast to Dublin, might become a hassle at the customs border.
It is important to note, that Brexit is still in a hypothetical phase and lacking explicitness. The future relationship may take different legal shapes, depending on the policy choices that the EU and UK have yet to make, but as the world is watching the situation unfold, Ireland is especially concerned for its own well-being. Though uncertain and disturbed about the various outcomes of an injurious Brexit, Itic expresses hope for a beau idéal: “Ideally the delivery of the backstop agreement on Ireland’s land border and a smooth transition period would be the best outcome for tourism.”