Official figures show a sharp drop in spending on holidays by Irish people in the first three months of this year, though there was a slight increase in the number of travelling done within Ireland.

The Central Statistics Office said the number of international trips taken by Irish people in the first quarter was just under 1.48 million, down 7.5% on the same period last year. Trips abroad for holidays fell by more than 17%, while spending on international travel dropped 16.4% to just over €1 billion.

Irish people also spent less on domestic travel - with a drop of almost 14% to €220.5m. But they took just under 1.8 million trips within Ireland, which was up slightly compared with the same period last year. The main reason for the increase was a 5% rise in the number of visits to friends and relatives.

Though the number of holiday trips fell slightly, the number of nights spent on holidays increased slightly.

Previous CSO figures have shown that travel in the first quarter of this year was affected by severe weather.