web analytics

1 million Aussies? Don’t get too excited

Written By: - Date published: 8:43 am, June 23rd, 2009 - 17 comments
Categories: cycleway, economy, john key, tourism - Tags:

So 1,001,880 Australians visited New Zealand in the year to May, up 3.7% over the last May year despite the recession Yay? Well don’t pop the bubbly just yet.

The total number of visitors fell 2.6% from 2,482,881 to 2,418,647. The decrease from other countries wiped out the gain from Australia. And here’s the important thing – Aussies spend less per visit than others (all this data is from the Ministry of Tourism and inflation-adjusted):
average expenditure per visitor
Sure more Aussies are visiting but they give relatively little to our economy per visit; not nearly enough to make up for the loss from other, higher-spending, countries:
total tourism expenditure
In fact, the Aussies are spending less per visit each year.
average expenditure per Aus visitor
Now I’m no big-city tourism policy maker. But I would have thought better strategy might be to target advertising at higher spending markets. Maybe someone should tell the Tourism Minister.

Not that it would do much good. This is the guy who thinks that if you build a national cycleway the tourists will come… and thinks that’s the best thing we could be spending $50 mil on, despite the fact that cycle tourists spend only 75% per night of the average international visitor and there’s no evidence a series of ‘Great Rides’ will attract more tourists. Clearly not one with an eye for a good investment.
-Marty G

17 comments on “1 million Aussies? Don’t get too excited”

  1. Maynard J 1

    Should we not try and get regional tourists to spend more, or stay longer? I say this in regards to the issue of air miles – we cannot be certain those higher-spending markets will want to keep coming here. Mind you, Japan is not far away, and they top the spending tables per head.

    • gingercrush 1.1

      The Japan market will probably never recover from what numbers we once had from there. Our future is likely with Korea and China. But until things improve internationally we’re best to focus on Australia.

      Whilst Marty G’s post is essentially right. We happen to be in a world economic recession with very few countries not experiencing a downturn. That means you have to make smart investments. Australia is that smart investment. Sure they don’t spend as much as others. But they’re immediately across the Tasman Sea and flights are cheap. The Tourist dollar internationally is scarce. Therefore you have to choose the places where you can see an increase in tourist numbers. Those higher spending markets are also being saturated by tourist advertisements. They’re also further away and thus less unlikely to come here at the moment.

      When economic conditions worldwide turn favourable. Then we can target countries such as the United States, Germany, United Kingdon and Canada. You’ll know that those countries are all in some dire economic times. Also remember there was a guest post here which said New Zealand was on a losing cause trying to get tourists to come here when every other country was doing the same.

  2. indiana 2

    Why does everything on this blog smack of “tall poppy” syndrome? Is all good news bad news?

  3. insider 3

    Your bottom axis on visitor numbers is out of scale. It could smooth out that peak a bit

    I wonder if Australians spend less because they come for relatively shorter times – the same way we would shoot over for a long weekend to Sydney, whereas for other visitors the scale of trip is somewhat larger so possibly longer. Wouldn’t a good strategy therefore be a focus on more frequent short breaks?

    I note the big drop in spending levels came during the last govt. I blame Helen Clark 🙂

    • Merlin 3.1

      It’s clearly (if you look at the tables) the increase and then reduction in foreign students that causes the spike and then drop off in total expenditure.

      I would think it’s cheaper airfares that have led to australians spending less per visit.

      Graphs don’t have to start at zero, especially when you’re looking at the change in something, not it’s absolute value or value relative to others.

    • The scaling if the bottom axes is fine: the ticks are nine months apart. I have quibbles with this post; the scaling on the charts isn’t one of them.

      (The y-axis of the last chart might more usefully start at zero, as this would clarify that the values all fall within a fairly tight range—[$1800,$2200]—, but I think purists lost that fight years ago.)

  4. George D 4

    Well, they are in a recession, so it’s perhaps not surprising that they’re spending slightly less than a year ago.

    I wonder what caused that step drop in 04-05. Perhaps new ski-fields being opened? A rise in the NZD?

    • George D 4.1

      Actually, Rudd avoided a technical recession with the huge stimulus package, but a downturn nonetheless.

  5. burt 5

    <party_political_message>

    We need to make sure we keet the tourists from Japan and Germany well away from NZ. These rich pricks come here and show us all how good it is for the economy for individuals to be wealthy. The great socialist disaster dream of nobody earning too much and nobody earning too little is at risk if we allow these rich pricks in.

    Fantastic news that low spending Aussies are comming here in increasing numbers, clearly the message that NZ is best for poor people has got through.
    </party_political_message>

    • Maynard J 5.1

      We could at least get in more of those poor, depressed and downtrodden Scandanavians. Especially Swedish volleyball teams.

      We should also get some of the really poor people from the USA to visit, and they could tell us what is wrong with our social welfare system and so on, and maybe offer a few suggestions to fine-tune our capitalist system to turn out a few more successes like them.

  6. Zaphod Beeblebrox 6

    Get used it, guys, more Aussies will want to see what water and snow looks like. One of the few benefits of global warming.

  7. gobsmacked 7

    How many of these arrivals from Australia are originally New Zealanders (whatever passport they now hold) returning to see family and friends? Of course you spend less per visit if you’re staying with Auntie, and eating her food.

    Last year the spin-story was: they’re going to live over there, we’re doomed.

    This year the spin-story is: they’re coming back for a visit, we’re saved.

    I guess that fits with trickle-down theory. Now if we could just persuade the rest of New Zealand to live in Australia and holiday here, we could have a real Pacific Island economy.

  8. craig 8

    Why do you keep dissing the cycleway? That’s like the coolest idea from a right wing government ever.

    • lprent 8.1

      It is underfunded for what was proposed. In fact it is useless for everything that was originally proposed.

      That is why it rapidly dropped from being a cycleway for the whole of NZ to being a set of unconnected “great cycleways”. Similarly the number of people employed on building it is reducing markedly. From memory it was originally intended to employ a few thousand people. That keeps getting reduced.

      Finally, in the usual nature of this useless government, it is un-costed, has had no effective cost-benefit analysis done, and has no scope. At this point they have no plans apart from allocating $50 million over 3 years (from memory) and an absolute determination to get something announced as starting by June 30th.

      The whole thing looks like it is simply being done to prevent clueless from looking like a mindless dork for proposing it off the cuff at the jobs summit.

      Have a look at No Right Turn. He has the cabinet papers released under a OIA. They make hilarious reading of how NOT to put a program in place. It appears that John Key aka clueless thinks that the taxpayers money is his to dispose of how he likes on stupid projects without the responsibility of accounting for the expenditure in advance.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Wairoa gets up to $6.1m to rebuild heart of CBD
    The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing up to $6.1 million to revitalise business and tourism opportunities in Wairoa, Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau announced today. The PGF is funding: Up to $4.8 million for the Wairoa Integrated Business and Tourism Facility Up to $960,000 for the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • Major Events support for creative and cultural events
    Creative and cultural events that highlight New Zealand’s diverse culture and build national pride are set to get a funding boost through the Major Events Fund, Economic Development Minister Phil Twyford said today. The new Creative and Cultural Events Incubator, which is funded through the Major Events Fund, will open ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    9 hours ago
  • Classroom internet in hundreds of schools to get a boost
    The Government has begun a massive IT upgrade to provide more seamless internet access to 200 schools around the country. Te Mana Tūhono – Technology in Schools work programme will launch with a pilot of 10 smaller state schools early this year. IT equipment that gives students access to the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Construction workforce, apprenticeships hit record highs
    Working with industry and committing to rebuild New Zealand’s infrastructure has produced a record high number of Kiwis working in the construction industry and learning trades, says Minister for Building and Construction Jenny Salesa. New figures available today from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and the Tertiary Education ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • NZ concludes digital economy trade talks with Singapore and Chile
    A new trade agreement concluded today helps New Zealand exporters and consumers take advantage of opportunities from digital trade.    Minister for Trade and Export Growth David Parker together with Chile’s Vice Minister of Trade Rodrigo Yañez and Singapore’s Minister of Trade and Industry Chan Chun Sing, have announced conclusion of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • Provincial Growth Fund to fund Waipukurau cultural development and tourism
    The Ngā Ara Tipuna -  Waipukurau Pā Site Interpretation project will receive $2.798 million from the Provincial Growth Fund to create an authentic cultural tourism experience, Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau announced today “The project will inform visitors about the history of six pā sites in Waipukurau with a combination ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • 21 new judges boost diversity, improve access to justice
    Twenty-one new District Court judges have been appointed in a move that will improve access to justice and boost diversity on the bench. The new judges include replacements for retirements and 10 new positions. Attorney-General David Parker today announced the 14 judges who can immediately be named, with the remainder ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Puhinui to Auckland Airport in 10 minutes
    Aucklanders are another step closer to getting rapid transit to the airport, with the start of construction to upgrade State Highway 20B to the airport, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today. SH20B will be upgraded with additional lanes in each direction, dedicated to bus and high-occupancy vehicles between Pukaki Creek ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Advancing New Zealand’s trade agenda focus of Europe meetings
    World Trade Organisation reform, agricultural trade and a free trade agreement with the United Kingdom will be the focus of Minister for Trade and Export Growth David Parker’s visit to Europe this week. David Parker leaves on Tuesday for a series of meetings in the UK and Switzerland that aim ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Minister of Defence to visit counterparts in US and Canada
    The Minister of Defence, Ron Mark, departed today for the United States and Canada where he will meet with his counterparts.  While in Canada Minister Mark will meet with his counterpart, Minister of National Defence Harjit Sajjan.  “New Zealand and Canada are close friends, and share an instinctive like-mindedness on ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Government to deliver family carers $2000 pay rise, expand scheme to spouses this year
    The Coalition Government is delivering this year the changes to Funded Family Care the disability sector has long-asked for, says Associate Minister of Health Jenny Salesa. “Today we are announcing the details of our big changes to Funded Family Care, including an annual average pay boost of $2,246.40 for funded ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Ko te reo kua mū: Piri Sciascia
    Minister for Māori Development Nanaia Mahuta joins te ao Māori in their sorrow as they learn of the loss of one of the great orators and spokespersons of a generation – Piri Sciascia.  “The son of Pōrangahau was a staunch advocate for Māori development and served his people for over ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Minister opens new ecosanctuary at Cape Farewell
    A new ecosanctuary with a predator proof fence on Golden Bay’s Cape Farewell, which will restore a safe home for sea birds, rare native plants, giant snails, and geckos, was officially opened today by the Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage. “There has been a fantastic community effort supported by the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Pacific partners work together to provide additional support to Australia
    The NZDF continues to support the Australian Defence Force (ADF) as it battles fires in Victoria and New South Wales, including by transporting Republic of Fiji Military engineers from Nadi to Australia, announced Defence Minister Ron Mark. On Saturday morning a NZDF Boeing 757 will depart New Zealand to uplift ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Kaikōura $10.88 million boost in tourism & business
    The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing $10.88 million to boost business and tourism opportunities in Kaikōura, Parliamentary Undersecretary for Regional Economic Development, Fletcher Tabuteau announced today. As part of the Kaikōura Marina Development Programme, the following two projects will receive PGF funding: A $9.88 million investment to begin the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Govt accounts in surplus, debt remains low
    The Government’s books are in good shape with the accounts in surplus and expenses close to forecast, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Treasury today released the Crown accounts for the five months to November. The operating balance before gains and losses (OBEGAL) was above forecast by $0.7 billion resulting ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Auckland focus for first Police graduation of 2020
    The number of Police on the Auckland frontline is increasing with the graduation today of a special locally-trained wing of new constables. Police Minister Stuart Nash says the graduation of eighteen officers from Recruit Wing 333-5 means that more than 1900 new Police have been deployed since the Coalition Government ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Wairarapa gets $7.11m PGF water boost
    The Provincial Growth Fund is putting $7.11 million into creating a sustainable water supply for Wairarapa, Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau announced today. The following two projects will receive Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) funding: A $7 million investment in Wairarapa Water Limited for the pre-construction development of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Progress with new Police station in Mahia
    Community safety and crime prevention in the East Coast community of Mahia has moved forward with the opening of a new Police station to serve the growing coastal settlement. Police Minister Stuart Nash has officially opened the new station, which was relocated almost 20 kilometres along the coast from the nearby ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Plans to protect the future of whitebaiting announced
    With several native whitebait species in decline the Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage has today released proposals to standardise and improve management of whitebait across New Zealand. “The need for action for a healthy whitebait fishery has never been greater,” Eugenie Sage said.  “Four of the six whitebait species are ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New resource for schools to increase awareness and understanding of climate change
    A new Ministry of Education resource available for schools in 2020 will increase awareness and understanding of climate change, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “The resource, Climate Change – prepare today, live well tomorrow, will help students understand the effects of climate change at a local, national and global ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Getting more out of our most productive firms
    Finance Minister Grant Robertson has approved the terms of reference for an Inquiry into the economic contribution of New Zealand's frontier firms. Frontier firms are the most productive firms in the domestic economy within their own industry. “These firms are important as they diffuse new technologies and business practices into ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • NZDF sends more support to Australia
    The New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) is sending an Environmental Health Team, a Primary Health Care Team and a Chaplain to Australia, boosting New Zealand support for the Australian Defence Force (ADF) as it battles bush fires in Victoria and New South Wales, Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand joins partners in calling for full investigation into air crash in Iran
    Acting Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Rt Hon Winston Peters says that developments suggesting a surface-to-air missile is responsible for the downing of the Ukrainian International Airlines flight in Iran is disastrous news. “New Zealand offers its deepest sympathies to the families of the 176 victims. It is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Staying connected to Australian agriculture
    Agriculture Minister, Damien O’Connor, says the Ministry for Primary Industries is continuing to stay connected to federal authorities in Australia as devastating fires affect the country.  “The Ministry is using an existing trans-Tasman forum for discussions on the agricultural impact of the fires and the future recovery phase,” says Damien ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Investment in schools – a commitment to communities
    Thousands of school-age children, their teachers and wider communities are benefiting from the Government’s multi-million dollar investment upgrading and renewing schools, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “We want New Zealand to be the best place to be a child and that means learning in warm, comfortable and modern classrooms,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand Defence Force sends support to Australia
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark today announced New Zealand is sending three Royal New Zealand Air Force NH90 helicopters and crew, and two NZ Army Combat Engineer Sections as well as a command element to support the Australian Defence Force efforts in tackling the Australian fires.  The New Zealand Defence Force ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Better access to books for blind and low vision citizens on World Braille Day
    "Today is World Braille Day and I am delighted to announce that an international treaty giving blind and low vision New Zealanders access to books and literary works comes into force today,” Minister for Disability Issues Carmel Sepuloni announced today. “Today the Marrakesh Treaty and the associated amendments to the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • New Zealand to send further firefighter support to Australia
    The New Zealand Government is sending a further 22 firefighters to help fight the Australian fires. “The devastation caused by these fires is taking a substantial toll on our Australian neighbours and we will continue to do what we can to assist as they deal with this extremely dynamic, dangerous ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago