Stellar performance from TNQ in domestic tourism data

This morning’s release of domestic tourism data for the March quarter from Tourism Research Australia (National Visitor Survey available here) will be very happy reading for TTNQ. It shows the Tropical North outperforming, by a country mile, the State and National figures.

Overnight domestic visitors increased by 6.7% across the country in the year to March, were up 2.6% to Queensland and increased 6.6% to TNQ. However the really good news comes when we consider the expenditure data; expenditure from those overnight visitors rose by 4.6% across the country, 6.8% in Queensland but a thumping 11.6% in TNQ (despite the fact that the average length of stay in the Far North actually declined from 5.1 to 4.8 nights). The average spend per visitor per night increased by 11.7% to $230.

Day trip data (while far less important) was also good news with national visitor numbers up 4.5%, Queensland up 4.4% and the TNQ region increasing by 6.7% (expenditure up by 8.1%).

As a result the total domestic tourism expenditure for the TNQ region increased by 11.1% from a year earlier.

Concerns that were being expressed in the middle of last year about the impact of things such as the GBR Bleaching events, and the impact that might be having on domestic tourism, would appear to have been firmly put to bed with this latest data confirming the recovery witnessed in the Sept and Dec 2017 data.

We now await the delayed international visitor data to see if this stellar domestic performance can be matched by foreign visitors.


  1. Mark Beath says:

    June 20th, 2018 at 3:36 am

    A few things.

    Last Q1 goes out which was an appalling tourism debacle in FNQ.

    Almost impossible to believe that accommodation costs don’t factor in on survey responses.

    Also it doesn’t factor in the seasonal factors which includes Queensland school holidays being moved forward into the period.

  2. Pete Faulkner says:

    June 20th, 2018 at 10:27 am

    Thanks Mark. You make a really good point. Certainly the year-on-year comparison this quarter looks a lot better because of the very poor Q1 performance in 2017. If we look at the past 2 years and compare Q1 2018 to Q1 2016 then we see a growth rate of just 3.6% over the two years…i.e. barely keeping up with inflation.
    The issue around school holidays I would suggest would be pretty minimal. In 2017 the holidays started on April 1st whereas this year it was March 30th. As you note that does move the start date into Q1 this year…but it’s only a matter of 2 days over a 3 month quarter.
    Not sure I understand your point about accommodation costs.
    Thanks for the comment, Pete

  3. Mark Beath says:

    June 21st, 2018 at 2:14 am

    Yes. You are right over the course of a year. Still Qantas noted the pull forward of Easter as a significant factor in March Quarter for leisure travel. They also noted changes on resource routes. There are a couple of tailwinds there for Queensland on business and leisure travel.

    Re accommodation. The most recent Dransfield Hotels report noted increases in hotel accommodation room rates about 10% in recent years for Cairns and PD. This has been for the last few years including to FY 2018. While it is a sub-sector of accommodation expenditure it doesn’t appear to have shown up in the NVS previously.

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