There has been a lot of navel gazing in recent months about the fact that the tourism market has collapsed.

There have been programmes on television and articles in newspapers and they try and analyse the reason for this.  They mainly waffle on about the high cost of everything here which is a fair argument. 

I have a very simple solution, that will be guaranteed to not only create a boom in tourism, but will revitalise a lot of businesses here as well.  What is more, it will cost absolutely nothing.  It won’t require a single cent of investment.

Repeal the smoking ban.

Just think about it for a moment.

What is wrong with this suggestion?  If businesses don’t like the return of smoking, there is nothing to stop them retaining the ban in their own premises.  If non-smokers don’t like the return of the smoky pub, they can carry on patronising the pubs that retain the ban [if any!  Hah!].

What would be the benefits? 

Well, just look at the UK for a start.  At a conservative estimate, 25% of the population of 65 million smoke.  That’s around 16 million people who need holidays like the rest of us.  I can absolutely guarantee that a large portion of these would be more than delighted to come over here, simply because there is nowhere else for them to go.  Speaking for myself, when the ban came in here, I started to holiday in the North.  When the ban came in there, I started to holiday in France.  It’s not that I am desperate to smoke in pubs, but rather to holiday in a place that doesn’t treat me as an inferior form of low-life.

Is there any drawback to this suggestion?  Is there is a single reason why it shouldn’t work?

Ireland would become a Mecca for holidaymakers, and a beacon of light in the fight against the Nanny State.

Apart from anything else, I’m running out of targets.

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How to revitalise Ireland’s tourism — 12 Comments

  1. You’re right, the craic’s  gone in the South.  And  France is far more relaxed – have you noticed the absence of signs and CCTV?  East Germans who hopped it over the Berlin wall probably felt the same way as a Brit/Irish leaving these accursed Isles.  Like there’s a weight off your back.

  2. A quick search reveals that there are 13 million smokers in the UK, 106,000 of whom are killed by smoking every year. Perhaps Ireland could develop a graveyard industry for the UK.

  3. Welcome Richard.  Indeed I did notice the lack of signs in France.  They do have the smoking ban, but they are far more relaxed about it.  It is becoming more and more like a communist state here.

    TT – With all due respect, that figure of 106,000 is the greatest load of bollix I ever heard.  Of the deaths in the UK, 106,000 may have been smokers, but they were also breathers, eaters and drinkers.  How can anyone possibly claim that smoking killed them.  Where did you get that figure?  ASH?

  4. TT – I did a little research on this.  I did a search for “smoking 106,000 uk” and got 8,760 results.  The problem was that they were all obviously quoting each other.  It took me a while to track back to the original source which was a report by the ‘National Health Agency‘ in 2004.  Reading through that document, it is full of assumptions and estimates.   It’s worth a read, but do so with an open mind.

  5. We all give up in the end. Smokers and non-smokers. If you want the country to generally live longer ban work (stress), ban cars (toxic pollution many times higher than cigarette smoke) and ban cities (same as number two).

    Easy. And then we’d all have much more time for TV.

  6. i have a better idea.. go to France to have your health issues treated then so we wont have to pay for your cancinogenic habit CHOICES

  7. Three points.

    1.  If you are a non-smoker [which I gather you are] then I probably contribute considerably more to the exchequer than you do.

    2. I don’t have any “heath issues” thanks very much.

    3. My choice of lifestyle is my business and no one else’s.


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