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Domestic tourism co-operation needed to align for growth

Domestic tourism co-operation needed to align for growth

More co-ordination and stronger co-operation between regions is needed to develop New Zealand’s domestic tourism potential and boost profits for operators.

The Tourism Industry Association (TIA) has today released Tourism 2025 – Growing Value Together, which is a blueprint to assist with aligning the New Zealand tourism sector to develop a shared goal of strategic growth.

AA Club Operations General Manager Peter Moxon says tourism operators and regional tourism organisations (RTOs) have an opportunity to capitalise on a vast and growing market that is often ignored by decision makers.

“Domestic tourism is the lifeblood for operators in the sector but the focus on growth in the broader sector is on international visitors because they bring in the export dollars for New Zealand,” Mr Moxon says.

“That TIA chief executive Martin Snedden has noted the importance of domestic tourism in the Tourism 2025 framework is critical if the sector is going to strongly contribute to growth.

“Improving success in the domestic sector is an important component of the broader Tourism 2025 framework.”

Mr Moxon says the challenge is for tourism operators to better cater to the growing cohort of Kiwi travellers, who increasingly demand improving standards in service and facilities along with exciting and engaging activities.

“More than 80% of domestic travel in New Zealand is by car and the AA represents the interests of about nearly a million of them which is why we’re so engaged with the sector.”

The AA publishes more than three million maps, accommodation and touring guides, attracts nearly five million online visits, offers accommodation discounts to its 900,000 members and has delivered more than $120 million in fuel discounts to motorists over the last 2½ years with AA Smartfuel.

“Since July, the AA along with The Fresh Information Company have been surveying thousands of our members with the AA Traveller Monitor to better understand where Kiwis go, where they travel from, what type of accommodation they stay in and what they spend.

“In a few months, we’ll have an entire year’s worth of conclusive domestic travel data which the industry can tap into to assist with planning and decision making.”

Mr Moxon says that operators and also their RTOs have an opportunity to really touch the hearts and minds of New Zealand travellers.

“If there’s some good cohesion in the industry, strong and innovative ideas will follow. The goal here is to encourage more Kiwis to travel around New Zealand particularly during the combined seven month shoulders of the peak summer season.”

In January, the AA Traveller Monitor shows that there were 3.03 million domestic overnight trips in New Zealand resulting in 11.1 million nights spent away from home and a total spent of more than $1 billion. This is up from 2.6 million trips in December resulting in 8.3 million nights spent away from home and a total spend of more than $900 million. February data will be available later this month.


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