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WALES: Let's cash in on stay-at-home holidaymakers; Tourism urged to take recession 'opportunity'.

Byline: By SAM LISTER Parliamentary Correspondent

HOTELIERS in North Wales have been urged to seize on the recession as a chance to make money from the falling numbers of holidaymakers going overseas.

Labour's Albert Owen wants the hospitality sector to tempt tourists by making the most of the current exchange rate that means the cost of foreign trips has rocketed.

He called on local businesses to be "imaginative" and look at offering special offers such as three nights for the price of two.

"The business sector has a good opportunity with the lower pound to look to the eurozone market to entice people to come and get a bargain. Our close neighbours in west Wales are the Republic of Ireland," he said in parliament.

"Friends who visit there more than I do tell me that a pint of beer now costs pounds 6. I am sure that Welsh tourism business and Visit Wales can entice people with bargains.

"This crisis should be turned into an opportunity. Local businesses should consider offering three nights for the price of two. We should use the facilities we have such as the coastal paths, golf clubs and so on to entice people to Wales.

Being imaginative at that local level will help."

Across the Wales the tourism industry is worth pounds 3bn. North Wales accounts for the biggest share of hotels and catering companies, which have sprung up as result of its traditional seaside resorts.

Last year MPs were told that while tourism was the main driver for social and economic development in North Wales there was a shortage in the skilled young workers signing up for training to meet the demands of the region's hospitality sector.

samlister@dailypost.co.uk

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Businesses in N.Wales have been told to get creative in a bid to lure cash-strapped tourists to popular destinations like Llandudno; Albert Owen MP
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Publication:Daily Post (Liverpool, England)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Feb 20, 2009
Words:314
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