Pierce Kavanagh Coaches, based at Urlingford, County Kilkenny is back in business with its 2021 coach tour programme now on sale to the Irish market and with great success.
Caoimhe Moloney, Group Operations Director informed fleetbusandcoach.ie that it is delighted at level of interest in the summer 2021 coach tours and although they can only roll with 50% capacity until later in July and then hopefully back to 100% from 5th August, it has been a huge boost to everyone in the company to have the phones ringing again, booking hotels and attractions but most of all to have their drivers out working. Fáilte Ireland issued a strict Covid Safety Charter for the tourism industry and coach operators must adhere to all the guidelines to open for business.
All international coach tour operator clients which accounts for nearly 70% of their business have not been able to resume their business into Ireland and it looks highly unlikely that they will return before the end of September.
It has been an extremely difficult 18 months for the Irish coach industry with limited government support available. CRSS support wasn’t available to the industry and coach operators who had vehicles assigned to tourism that were younger than 7 years old were able to apply for very limited support which equated to just 3 months coach repayments per coach. Everyone is aware that the future of the industry is at its most vulnerable with some operators receiving absolutely no funding or support. For Pierce Kavanagh Coaches the wheels have started turning, but, as with all operators, there will be a lot of challenges to get the business back to where it was.