In a week that’s seen Tourism Australia release its National Visitor Survey, there’s lots of information swirling about relating to the Aussie traveller.
So Travel Weekly is here to round it up and squish it down into the only bite-sized pieces you need.
And while it’s all looking dandy, it comes as the NSW Business Chamber warns of a 10,000 job shortfall in Australian tourism by 2020.
Australian travel: 2016
In the year to December 2016, Tourism Australia recorded some promising domestic tourism figures, including:
- The number of Australians taking an overnight trip for a holiday increased six per cent to 37.1 million trips
- Day trips for holidays were up 11 per cent to 92.8 million
- Domestic overnight trip spend increased five per cent on the previous year to a record high of $61 billion
- Domestic overnight trips for holiday raked in a record $30.7 billion during the year – up $2.5 billion (or nine per cent) on the previous year and accounting for 82 per cent of the overall growth in spend for domestic overnight trips
- Total day trip spend reached a record $19.8 billion on the back of growth in holiday travel
- Total overnight spend in Australia reached the $100 billion mark for the first time in the year ending December 2016, with combined international spend of $39.1 billion and domestic overnight spend of $61 billion
- Trips with a duration of two nights recorded the largest growth, increasing eight per cent during the year and accounting for 23.9 million trips. Three-night trips increased four per cent to 13.6 million.
- During 2016, there were 4.4 million domestic overnight trips that included the use of UBER as a form of transport.
- Australians continued their love affair with the great outdoors with 22.4 million (or one in four) trips including a visit to the beach. Going bushwalking was also popular, with 10.4 million trips including this activity.
- Socialising was also top of the list when it came to ‘things to do’ on a trip, with dining out a popular activity on 57.4 million trips (or 63 per cent of trips), while a visit to friends and/or relatives occurred on 42.8 million trips (47 per cent)
How is this split across the country?
What does the industry say?
Tourism & Transport Australia (TTF) says congrats to Australia on exceeding the $100 billion spending benchmark, but now the hard work begins.
COE Margy Osmond said, “We can’t afford to switch to cruise control, now that we’ve reached the magical 100-billion-dollar mark. As other key industries slow, the rise of tourism is more important than ever before to national employment and to economic growth.
“With international markets growing, particularly China and greater Asia, we now have much bigger opportunities than ever before, but also much bigger challenges of building our visitor economy in the face of fierce competition from other markets.”
TTF and Osmond are calling for:
- More luxury products, particularly accommodation of five-star and higher
- Investment in infrastructure such as transport and public Wi-Fi access
- Competitive marketing to ensure Australia’s offering stands out among competing global tourism campaigns
- Clear marketing to assure international visitors the safety and resilience of The Whitsundays, especially, after the damage of Cyclone Debbie
The Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment, Steven Ciobo MP, added, “This record spending is creating Australian jobs.
“Tourism is a $120 billion industry that employs around 1 in 12 Australians, so this growth in holiday spending means more jobs, more investment and more prosperity for all Australians, especially those in regional Australia, where 45 per cent of tourist dollars are spent.
“In 2013 the Coalition returned responsibility for domestic tourism marketing to the states and territories to refocus Tourism Australia on our offshore marketing capacity.
“Over the past three years, every state and territory has seen double digit growth in visitor numbers and visitor nights, with the Northern Territory the standout performer.”