ABS data released today for Sept shows short term arrivals at a new record high (709,700 seasonally adjusted) which is 11.5% higher than at the same time last year. Over the past year over 8.06 million arrivals have been recorded; also a new record and up 10.7% for the same period a year ago.
However, the boom in the number of Chinese arrivals is showing some signs of slowing. While arrivals remain high (see second chart below) we can see that the rate of growth has eased. On a trend basis arrivals from China are up 21.3% over the past 12 months compared to the same period a year ago; this is the slowest pace of growth in a year; but up just 7.8% this month compared to a year ago. Trend arrivals have fallen slightly in September, although they remain close to record highs. There is no suggestion here that the China boom has come to a halt, rather that the pace of growth has eased (hardly surprising given the previous rates of growth we’ve been enjoying).
Countries where we are seeing very solid Trend growth since this time last year include Japan (+18.3%), South Korea (+29.5%), India (+18.8%) and USA (+21.9%).
Short term departures also hit a new annual record (almost 9.8 million) and are up 4.8% from the same period a year ago.