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Record winter visitor spend for Hawke’s Bay

27 September 2019

Visitor spending in Hawke’s Bay over the winter season reached record levels, according to the latest Monthly Regional Tourism Estimates (MRTE) prepared by the Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment.

Seasonal visitor spend in Hawke’s Bay reached $127m for the June to August period, an increase of $8m or 7% over the same period last year. International visitor spend was the standout performer increasing by 10%, while domestic visitor spend also rose 6%.

The annual value of Hawke’s Bay visitor spend is now estimated at $664m in the 12 months to August 2019.

Hawke’s Bay Tourism Chief Executive Hamish Saxton says the result points to Hawke’s Bay’s continued progression as a year-round destination.

“There’s no doubting Hawke’s Bay’s appeal during our traditional tourism seasons. However, the rate of growth during winter over the past three years in particular is demonstrating the region’s visitor offering is continue to evolve.”

Hawke’s Bay Tourism Industry Association Chairman Hamish Prins says most operators will be benefiting from a lengthening of the peak season into months that only a few years ago were comparatively quiet.

“Growth in visitor spend creates more confidence for businesses that benefit from tourism to continue investing in their offering, which in turn creates more reasons for people to visit Hawke’s Bay. Simply put, it’s a win-win situation for our region.”

George Hickton, Board Chairman for Hawke’s Bay Tourism, says the industry is appreciative of the support it gets via primary funder Hawke’s Bay Regional Council, along with the support of the region’s four territorial authorities and other partners.

“The entire region has benefited from the period of sustained growth in Hawke’s Bay’s visitor economy. This makes it vitally important that the industry continues to receive appropriate support, to ensure we can attract more than our fair share of visitors in the face of increased marketing spend by other regions.”


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