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Visitor arrivals dip in January

Visitor arrivals dip in January

28 February 2018

For the first time in five years, total overseas visitor arrivals in January were down on the same month a year before, Stats NZ said today. This change mainly reflected a drop in arrivals from China.

In January 2018, total overseas visitor arrivals numbered 379,200, down 1,800 from January 2017.

Chinese New Year, a peak holiday travel season, was in late January in 2017, but in mid-February in 2018, which likely influenced the timing of monthly arrivals from China to New Zealand.

“In January 2018, the overall fall in visitor arrivals was driven by a 31 percent drop in visitors from China. The number fell from more than 54,100 in January 2017 to 37,300 this year,” population insights senior manager Peter Dolan said.

“However, rolling weekly provisional figures show arrivals from China are picking up in February 2018, as expected, with the start of the Year of the Dog.”

The drop in visitors from China in January was mainly offset by increased numbers from most other countries, including the United States, Australia, and the United Kingdom.

Despite the dip for the month, visitor arrivals for the year ended January 2018 numbered 3.73 million, 5 percent above the January 2017 year.

New Zealanders make more trips

New Zealand residents set a new annual January record of 2.87 million overseas trips in the January 2018 year, up 232,300 (9 percent) from the January 2017 year. The number of trips made to most countries increased, the largest being:
• Australia – up 45,500 (4 percent)
• Fiji – up 20,200 (13 percent)
• China – up 15,300 (15 percent)
• United Kingdom – up 12,900 (12 percent)
• India – up 9,000 (14 percent).

In January 2018, New Zealand residents made 173,700 trips overseas, up 5 percent from January 2017.

For more information about these statistics:

• Visit International travel and migration: January 2018
• Visit Annual net migration eases from recent peak
• See CSV files for download

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