• Patrick McBride

Boost in domestic visitors for Coast

51 percent increase in domestic visitors over winter holidays.

New data comparing domestic visitor numbers from this year’s winter school holidays to last year’s shows the West Coast enjoying a boost of 50.7%.

A report from Data Ventures commissioned by Tourism New Zealand shows Kaikoura had the biggest increase at 56.2%, followed by the West Coast 50.7%, Fiordland 46.5% and Marlborough 43.9%.

14,010 tourists visited the West Coast during the winter school holidays, compared to 9,300 the year before - an increase of 4,710 visitors.

Additional data from MBIE / Marketview-Paymark shows accommodation spend on the West Coast was up 47.9% for the week ended 16 July compared to the previous year, and total retail spend up 20.6%.

DWC Regional Tourism Manager Jim Little says the data confirms anecdotal feedback.

“Having recently been to Karamea, Charleston, Westport, Reefton and Franz Josef the feedback has been that many operators have experienced one of the best winter holidays on record.

“However, we expect it to slow down a bit until the next school holidays. DWC has a major campaign planned to stimulate demand."