Tasmania: inbound tourists’ ‘flavour of the month’

In Attractions, Australian Cultural Exports, National Headlines, Tasmania, Tourism Routes

Tasmania’s latest tourism snapshot points to a boom in overseas visitors

From abc.net.au, 1st May 2014

Tasmania is positioning itself as a favoured destination for international visitors, with the latest figures showing a big jump in numbers.

Figures released by Tourism Research Australia show the island state attracted almost 160,000 international tourists last year, up 14 per cent on 2012.

The number of visitors from Asia rose by more than 50 per cent and there was a 45 jump in tourists from New Zealand.

Tourism Tasmania’s chief executive John Fitzgerald says strong growth in the Asian tourism market is a national trend.

“Tassie’s just winning more than our fair share of that market to Australia so I think, you know, the environment and the great food and wine experiences we’re offering, the wilderness, the cleanness of the environment, the water etcetera, the seafood, all is appealing to those Asian markets,” said Mr Fitzgerald.

Tasmania the ‘flavour of the month’

Luke Martin from the Tourism Industry Council says it is the biggest jump in overseas tourist numbers that he has ever seen.

Mr Martin says Tasmania is being seen as a fresh and exciting destination.

“We are flavour of the month, we don’t joke about it, it is true,” he said.

“Tasmania’s kind of going through a bit of a renaissance and obviously MONA is leading part of that but also I guess there’s an awakening of what Tasmania is as a destination and I think that shows that we’re perhaps getting some catch up.”

Mr Martin says the industry is experiencing a significant period of growth and its main challenge is to sustain it for as long as possible.

“That’s why we need to look at our product offering, we need to encourage the next growth of opportunities around new development, new products,” he said.

“It’s just about making sure that we extend that period as long as we can over the next two, three years and ultimately the more visitors we get into the state the more visitor spending circulating through the economy and that’s where the jobs and the economic growth come from.”

The figures show the total expenditure by international holiday visitors was up 34 per cent in 2013 to almost $140 million.

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