RTÉ sells Six Nations ad packages for first time since 2017

It will air two Ireland games this year, with rights partner Virgin showing three

RTÉ is selling advertising packages priced at up to €85,000 for its half of this year's Six Nations television coverage as action from the rugby championship returns to the broadcaster next month for the first time since 2017 under a joint rights deal with rival Virgin Media Television.

An advertiser securing the highest profile 30-second spot – a single ad slotted in before the starting whistle of each of RTÉ’s eight games – will pay €85,000, while a 30-second spot in each of its half-time breaks costs €60,000. An ad package for a spot in breaks before or after each game is priced at €40,000, according to RTÉ Media Sales.

RTÉ will this year show two of the Ireland games: the opening fixture of the competition against Wales at the Aviva Stadium on February 5th and England v Ireland on March 12th. It has also offered ad packages for just these two games, while 200,000 ad impressions on RTÉ Player is priced at €12,000.

The broadcaster's other games are France v Italy, Wales v Scotland, England v Wales, Wales v France, Wales v Italy and France v England.


Virgin Media Television, which held the television rights exclusively from 2018 to 2021, will broadcast France v Ireland on February 12th, Ireland v Italy on February 27th and Ireland v Scotland on March 19th, the final day of the Guinness-sponsored championship.

Virgin, which is permitted by the broadcasting regulator to show more ads per hour than RTÉ, will also show a further five games not involving Ireland.

Unprecedented coverage

Under the terms of the unprecedented partnership, announced last May, the broadcaster showing three of Ireland’s five games will alternate each year, while the “third” game is likely to be the Italy fixture, which typically attracts lower audience figures. Games on one channel are expected to be cross-promoted by the other.

RTÉ and Virgin Media Television will next week officially launch their free-to-air coverage of the championship, confirming the presenters and pundits who will line out for each.

Laura Slattery

Laura Slattery

Laura Slattery is an Irish Times journalist writing about media, advertising and other business topics