St Patrick's Day Festival sees thousands fly to Ireland for the celebrations
Big picture: PA

The St Patrick’s Day Festival will see thousands of people flock to Ireland from all over the globe.

Hordes of tourists will join vast swathes of Irish expatriates returning to their home country to take part in the celebrations.

With an estimated 1 million Irish people living abroad, the aviation industry provides a vital service in reconnecting the Irish diaspora with their roots.

The number of overseas visitors to Dublin for the festival hit 106,000 last year

The majority of St Patrick’s Day visitors will head to the Republic of Ireland’s capital, Dublin, for the four-day festival, which takes place from 16–19 March.

The already-thriving city is a hive of activity during the festival—which this year celebrates its 21st anniversary—with a host of events taking place.

As well as Irish bands and performers, musicians and entertainers from all over the globe will fly into Dublin to perform. 

The number of overseas visitors to Dublin for the festival hit 106,000 last year. This followed a record-breaking 2015, which saw 116,000 visitors head to the capital.

In 2017, however, that figure is set to be topped. 

The St Patrick’s Day Festival is one of many cultural celebratory events enabled by air connectivity

This is in part due to the Ireland rugby team’s clash with England in the final 6 Nations Championship game on Saturday, 18 March, another aviation-supported event.

The game will welcome thousands of fans from England, taking the short flight over the Irish Sea.

The St Patrick’s Day Festival is just one of many national days or cultural celebratory events enabled by air connectivity.

Throughout the year and all over the world, aviation’s speedy and safe service ensures these events are shared, fostering social and cultural understanding.

Providing important personal and cultural links in a timely fashion is a benefit that only aviation can bestow

Christmas, Eid holidays, the Chinese New Year and the Thanksgiving weekend are among the joyous occasions that benefit from aviation’s ability to reconnect family and friends and to welcome visitors to new experiences.

It is important that these events retain their relevance.

In an increasingly globalized world, only air travel can ensure they remain a key part of the calendar of those directly involved while also facilitating the ability for visitors to learn, to understand, and to participate.

Providing important personal and cultural links in a timely fashion is a benefit that only aviation can bestow.

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