Data released by the ABS today confirms that, while the number of arrivals into the country approached 9 million for the past 12 months and the rate of growth exceeds 8%, Aussies are starting to feel the impact of a weaker A$ and the rate at which foreign travel is growing is slowing quickly.
Arrivals rose in Dec by 3.7% from the same time a year ago and are up 8.1% for the past 12 months. China continues to lead the charge with the Trend data (preferred to the too-volatile seasonally adjusted figures) shows the figures up 24.5% from a year ago and 16.8% higher over the course of the past 12 months.
Although departures also rose in Dec (1.8% higher than the same time a year ago), the total over the past 12 months was up by just 3.9%. This is the slowest rate of growth for this measure that we’ve seen since the GFC-inspired travel slowdown in 2008/09. It would seem that the weaker A$ is starting to influence Aussies’ travel plans and that, although they are still travelling abroad in record numbers, the rate of growth is in rapid decline. A year ago the pace of growth of departures by Aussies was almost 10%.