Strong ski season helps deliver excellent August visitor arrivals

Tourism New Zealand says the strong growth in international arrivals during August confirms just how good the ski season has been for the tourism industry.

Arrivals were up 6.2 per cent for the month compared to August 2012, and total arrivals were up 0.9 per cent full year-on-full year (when arrivals were boosted by the Rugby World Cup year). Total arrivals were up 6.0 per cent when compared to the full year ending August 2011 demonstrating the underlying growth being achieved. 

Australia once again performed well, achieving a very strong increase in arrivals with visitors topping 100,000 for the first time in an August month. Total arrivals from Australia were up 4.7 per cent for the month and 1.3 per cent for the year.

"The growth we are seeing across the majority of offshore markets is a fantastic result, with the increase during the month continuing the strong trend that began at the beginning of 2013," says Kevin Bowler, Chief Executive.

"The growth in August holiday arrivals, up 11.8 per cent for the month, is significant and will have delivered increased value to the industry given holiday visitors tend to stay longer and send more while they're here."

Kevin said a big story this month is the continued growth from traditional long-haul markets which all showed pleasing increases during August.  Holiday arrivals from the UK were up 25.9 per cent, USA up 14.7 per cent and Germany up 10.1 per cent for the month.

"What is even more encouraging is the significant growth in holiday stay days from these traditional long staying markets - with the UK 11.5 per cent, USA up 6.7 per cent and Germany up a staggering 38.1 per cent for the month of August compared to last August.

China also supported its increase in holiday arrivals during August (up 29.9 per cent) with a strong increase in holiday stay days, up 32.4 per cent for the month.

"A key focus of our work in China has been to encourage visitors to stay longer and do more while they are here - so this is very pleasing to see."

The strong growth across leading markets in August follows Tourism New Zealand's recent release of the latest edition of the 100% Middle-earth, 100% Pure New Zealand advertising campaign, with new campaign activity underway to support sustained growth over the coming months.

Contact Leah Phelps, Senior Communications Advisor, Tourism New Zealand; phone +64 21 843 896