Holiday arrivals also grew 15.6 per cent in the 12 months to May 2016, with all of Tourism New Zealand’s prioritised top six markets showing holiday growth of between 9.1 per cent (Australia) to 31.4 per cent from China.
Tourism New Zealand’s Chief Executive Kevin Bowler welcomed the figures and the confirmation of a successful autumn tourism period.
“We have an enormous focus at Tourism New Zealand to broaden the peak arrivals period and supporting the tourism industry to maximise the resources and capacity it has that would otherwise be under-utilised out of peak.
“It is clear that our strategy is delivering. Combined holiday arrivals growth over the autumn months March, April and May were up 19.6 per cent on the same quarter 2015.
“When you consider the 17.1 per cent growth seen in the spring months (Sep-Nov) you can see that both spring and autumn outstripped summer growth of 15.1 per cent (Dec-Feb).
Kevin says the growth is extremely positive for the industry and wider economy, and that there is plenty of room for more visitors.
“Whilst we have been experiencing unprecedented growth, it is also important t0 remind ourselves that even in our busiest summer months, on average and on any given day, there are only three holiday makers for every 100 New Zealanders in the country.
“This is of course why we are able to continue to deliver the welcoming, friendly, 100% Pure New Zealand experience that our visitors love and continue to talk about long after their visit.
“In the next fortnight, we will welcome both American Airlines and United Airlines on their inaugural flights from the West Coast of the US to Auckland. We know that June and July arrivals figures from the US will show yet more growth and more value to New Zealand.”
Leah McNeil, Senior Communications Advisor, Tourism New Zealand
021 220 8031, firstname.lastname@example.org