An extra bank holiday this year could generate up to €20 million in tourism revenue, RTÉ News has learned.

That is according to an analysis carried out by Fáilte Ireland.

Sources close to the study said they expected the figure to be higher but believe the findings are robust.

Some within Government think that while a new public holiday now looks certain to fall later in the year, it could be "tailored" to occur at a different point in the years ahead.

A number of Government TDs believe a bank holiday in late September would be more beneficial to the economy.

Fine Gael Deputy Ciarán Cannon suggested the new holiday should coincide around the same time as Thanksgiving is celebrated in the US.

He said a Thanksgiving public holiday on the last Monday in November would strengthen the links between Ireland and the United States and generate new tourism opportunities.

On the question of when a bonus for frontline workers might be agreed by Government, there are indications that an announcement could be made around budget day on 12 October, but the full details may take longer to finalise.

Speaking in Washington, Tánaiste Leo Varadkar said that no decision has yet been made on a possible date.

"It may even require primary legislation so that needs to be borne in mind too. The idea is around remembrance of the fact that 5,000 people or more have passed away and they have families who are grieving, and also a way of recognising volunteers as well as workers who made a special effort," he said.

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Pandemic bonuses for private sector difficult and complicated, says Tánaiste

Mr Varadkar said that the Government is looking at ways of rewarding private sector workers for their efforts during the pandemic but that the payment of bonuses is complicated.

The Government plans to give frontline workers a bonus as a reward for their efforts during the pandemic.

Payments and time off are being considered for healthcare workers, however there are calls to broaden it to other workers.

Mr Varadkar said that some retail workers have already received bonuses from their employers.

"It is difficult for Government to pay bonusses to people in the private sector. We can do that for people who are in our employment in the public sector," Mr Varadkar said.

"For the private sector it is more complicated so we would have to think of other ways of doing that," he added.

Mr Varadkar said that ideas under consideration include the extra bank holiday and tax credits but added that these things are under discussion and that no conclusions have yet been reached.

Asked how pandemic bonuses would be paid for, the Tánaiste said that it would not impact on the upcoming budget as the money would come from this financial year, adding that the Government's finances were in a slightly better position that had been previously forecast.

Meanwhile, the leader of the Green Party said the Government has not completed its review of how a pandemic bonus could be applied.

Minister Eamon Ryan said he did not want to preempt or speculate on what Government will decide but that it will be decided in the coming weeks.

He said that there are public servants and private sector workers who are working in very difficult circumstances in many cases.

Mr Ryan said he wanted to recognise there are a "whole variety of people who are actually working in the pandemic in a way that showed real leadership".

Teachers look to be part of pandemic bonus talks

Teacher unions have said that they expect to be involved in any discussions around the acknowledgement of workers' contributions during the pandemic.

In a joint statement the Association of Secondary Teachers in Ireland, Teachers' Union of Ireland and the Irish National Teachers' Organisation said that "teachers' extraordinary efforts both face-to-face with their pupils in crowded classrooms and in the online learning space have allowed schools to continue to prioritise teaching and learning while meeting children/ young people's needs".

The statement follows calls from health sector unions, the National Bus and Rail Union and the Association of Garda Sergeants & Inspectors for some form of special recognition of their efforts during the pandemic.

Additional reporting Tommy Meskill, Laura Hogan