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NZ'ers Spend $2.7 Billion While Overseas

Survey of Returned Travellers: Year ended June 2003

New Zealanders Spend $2.7 Billion While on Overseas Trips

New Zealanders away on overseas trips of less than one year spent $2.7 billion in the year ended 30 June 2003, according to results of the Survey of Returned Travellers released by Statistics New Zealand.

The expenditure varied on a quarterly basis, with the September 2002 quarter recording the highest level of expenditure, at $875 million, and the March 2003 quarter recording the lowest level of expenditure, at $527 million. Changes in the number of travellers returning each quarter accounted for most of the changes in total quarterly expenditure.

Approximately 80 percent of expenditure was attributed to personal (non-business) travel while 20 percent was for business-related travel. Forty percent of all expenditure by New Zealand travellers occurred in Australia, for the year ended June 2003.

The next highest level of spending was recorded in the United Kingdom (UK), at 12 percent, followed by the United States of America (US), at 9 percent. Payment using credit cards accounted for over 40 percent of all overseas spending by New Zealand travellers for the year. Payment using travellers cheques accounted for only 3 percent of spending for the year.

This is significantly different to results recorded in the early 1990s, which showed that expenditure using travellers cheques and credit cards each accounted for around 25 percent of total spending.

The survey's results show that there were four times as many New Zealanders going overseas for personal reasons as there were for business-related travel. A breakdown of expenditure shows that business travellers spent twice as much per day as personal travellers.

However, personal travellers spent twice as long abroad as did business travellers, on average. These two results tended to balance each other, with both types of travellers spending about the same amount of money per trip overall. Average expenditure was $2,379 per trip for all travellers, the same level as for personal travellers and close to the average expenditure recorded for business travellers. Brian Pink Government Statistician


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