The amount spent abroad last year by Irish residents using Visa debit, credit, and prepaid cards rose by 8% to €1.36 billion.

The growth has been driven by the economic recovery and intense airline competition which has fuelled passenger growth, according to Visa.

€3.75m is spent on a daily basis by Irish-based Visa cardholders worldwide.

The majority of spending takes place over the summer, with more than 40% (€548m) spent as tourists from Ireland take their holidays between June and September.

The figures from Visa also indicate the surge in popularity of winter breaks, with overall spending across the months of October, November, and December increasing on average 9% year on year.

There was a significant rise in spending by Irish people in European destinations last year, with Spain (+22%), Italy (+25%), Germany (+20%) and the Netherlands (+30%) seeing the largest levels of growth.

Factors such as increased access via new flight routes also saw Iceland see a 97% increase in spending by Irish people abroad.

The UK remains the most popular destination, by level of spend among Irish Visa cardholders, with €400.7m spent in 2015.