Tourism spending soaring as travellers head to the regions

09 January 2019

Tourists spenta whopping $113.4 billion in Australia last year as more travellers are headingto the bush or regional coastal towns for their holidays, according to thelatest International Visitor and National Visitor Survey results.

Minister forTrade, Tourism and Investment Simon Birmingham said it was encouraging to seethat more and more of the record 8.4 million international travellers whoflocked to Australia to the year ending September 2018 were heading to regionaldestinations.

"Australia'stourism industry continues to see strong growth and our regions are starting toreap the benefits," Minister Birmingham said.

"These latestresults show 2.84 million international travellers chose to travel beyond ourcapital cities and spent time in the bush, at the coast or even in the outback.

"This is greatnews for regional towns around Australia and it's also terrific to see travellers moving off the beaten track.

"This isexactly why 80 per cent of Tourism Australia's current campaigns,featuretourism experiences outside of our capital cities.

"Forexample, Tourism Australia's UndiscoverAustralia campaign encourages travellers from South and South-EastAsia to experience the more unusual, unfamiliar and unexpecteddestinations on offer around our country such as swimming with whalesharks on WA's Ningaloo reef.

"Ourgovernment continues to deliver record funding to Tourism Australia forcutting-edge campaigns such as Undiscover and Dundee, and these latestresults demonstrate how these campaigns are helping to lure more tourists downunder.

"Whilst we'restill seeing strong numbers in the major cities, our current focus is gettingtravellers to stay an extra few days and get a taste for the rest ofAustralia.

"With forty-threecents in every tourism dollar is spent in regional Australia, every singledollar makes a big difference to small businesses and local communities.

"We knowtourism is a major industry for many regional areas, and that's why through ourBuilding Better Regions Fund we've set aside up to $45 million for tourisminfrastructure projects so local communities in regional areas can seize onlocal tourism opportunities.

"Regionaldestinations also continue to be popular for Aussies with domestic spending inregional Australia increasing 10 per cent to $36.2 billion during the year.

"More and moreAustralians are turning to nature for their holidays, whether it be kayakingnear Cradle Mountain in Tassie, cycling in the Blue Mountains in NSW orbushwalking in the Bungle Bungle Range in WA."

Domesticvisitors spent a record $70.3 billion to the year ending September 2018 inAustralia on tourism, a 10 per cent increase, whilst international visitors arealso spending record amounts with spending up 5 per cent to $43.2 billion.

"MoreAussies holidaying in our own backyard teamed with this record spending is agreat boost for Australian businesses and helps contribute to a strongereconomy," Minister Birmingham said.

"With1 in 13 Australians already employed in the tourism industry, these strongresults will only help to create more jobs for Australians."

China continuesto be the number country for visitors, with numbers up 8 per cent to 1.3million. Visitors from India increased by 20 per cent to 324,000, and there wasgood growth in the number of arrivals from Japan, up 6 per cent to 419,000.

The latest International Visitor Survey and NationalVisitor Survey results are available at: www.tra.gov.au.

Media enquiries

  • Minister's office: (02) 6277 7420
  • DFAT Media Liaison: (02) 6261 1555