Wednesday, July 24, 2024

ACT tourism figures sky high

New figures released by Tourism Research Australia have shown record growth in visitor numbers for Canberra,  along with subsequent record expenditure in the Capital in the year ending December 2023.

During this period, the ACT welcomed 5.8 million visitors, who spent $3.8 billion, making this the highest ever visitor expenditure in a 12 month period over the past 25 years – surpassing 2022’s expenditure by $770 million.

Total visitor numbers have recovered to 95% from pre-COVID levels and expenditure has surpassed pre-Covid levels, at 135% (when compared to the year ending December 2019).

The ACT welcomed 5.63 million domestic visitors, who spent a total of $3.33 billion last year. This is the highest ever number of visitor nights, the highest ever expenditure, and the third highest number of domestic visitors in the ACT in a twelve-month period over the past 25 years, said Chief Minister Andrew Barr.

“Across all states and territories, the ACT experienced the biggest growth in domestic overnight visitation, and second highest expenditure growth, when compared to the year ending December 2022,” he said.

NSW remains the main source of domestic visitors to the ACT, accounting for two thirds of overnight visitors, and three quarters of day trip visitors.

“Our international markets continue to rebound strongly with the USA, UK, China and India delivering 40 percent of international visitors,” said Minister Barr.

“The city’s diverse, accessible visitor experience, led by our major attractions and events, are growing our reputation as a go to holiday destination. Major exhibitions at our national attractions have been significant draw cards and new investment in a range of tourism products is providing more reasons to visit and return.

“Our expanding aviation connectivity is making it cheaper and easier for visitors to get to Canberra. Our airport connects to 12 domestic destinations, three North American hubs with Fiji Airways,  and a host of destinations through Asia with Batik Airways.”

Mr Barr said the ACT tourism industry was also thriving on a national stage, receiving a record seven awards at the 2023 Qantas Australian National Awards including three gold awards.

“Growing national and international visitor numbers to Canberra is a key priority for the ACT Government.”

“The results for the year ending December 2023 show we are on track to meet and exceed the T2030 Tourism Strategy 2023-2030’s interim goal of 3.1 billion in visitor expenditure by year ending 2025, and to reach the target our visitor economy to reach $4 billion by the end of the decade.

“Improving access to international markets will be key in achieving this target and will continue to be a focus for the government,” he said.

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