Chinese tourists lead in North Queensland as domestic visitors fall away

Published on : Wednesday, September 13, 2017

TNQTNQ’s vital tourism market has shown that the domestic visitor numbers still lags behind but continues to experience a boom in arrivals from the ever growing Chinese market. the ABS’ Short Term Arrivals and Departures for July shows that Australia’s tourism market is still booming with arrivals up 8.8 per cent across the country year on year for the 12 months to July.



The Chinese market still serves as a promising market for the Australia’s tourism market and the arrivals are up 8.8 per cent across the country year on year for the 12 months to July.



While the figures paint a rosy picture nationally, when looking at the data for TNQ economist Pete Faulkner was more cautious, saying there has been a significant decline in domestic visitors and overall tourism expenditure in the region which was having broader economic impacts in the region. He also said that the reality is that the domestic tourism market is much bigger and more important to TNQ when compared with the international market.



Domestic tourism has been deteriorating in TNQ and expenditure has been declining for every quarter since March 2016. In the year to March 2016, the domestic expenditure in TNQ was $2.06 billion and was as low as $1.89 billion in March 2017. However, at the same period of time, the international tourist expenditure was $1.08 billion.



“The number of international tourists visiting TNQ has gone up by a lot, but tourism expenditure in the region has flat lined. There has been very little change in international tourism spending”, he said.



On the international front, TNQ has been boosted recently with the news that two airlines will start direct flights between Cairns and China in December. China Southern and Hainan Airlines are planning to bring additional Chinese visitors and millions of dollars to the local economy.



Mr Faulkner said that there have been improvements in the Japanese and US markets but they are coming off a really low base. Fortunately, there has been a massive growth in the Chinese tourists’ numbers from about 31,000 to 214,000 this year.


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