THE Gold Coast has cemented its title as Australia’s tourist capital, with holidaymakers flocking to the city in record numbers.
The National Visitor Survey* figures released today show domestic overnight visitation grew by 7.2 per cent to a record 3.8 million, for the 12 months to December 2018.
Record overnight expenditure topped $3.5 billion, up 19.7 per cent year on year and visitor nights increased to 14.7 million, up 9 per cent.
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Destination Gold Coast CEO Annaliese Battista said the Gold Coast’s appeal translated into record figures for the city.
“Domestic overnight spend grew by almost 20 per cent, which is a phenomenal result for our tourism economy,” Ms Battista said.
“It’s especially encouraging to see more domestic tourists choosing to holiday on the Gold Coast.”
Holiday visitation increased by 5.2 per cent to 2 million while intrastate holiday visitation increased by 3.3 per cent to 984,000. Interstate holiday visitation increased by 7 per cent to 1.1 million.
“These holidaymakers make up the bulk of our total tourism market, so it’s no surprise Aussie families are at the centre of our marketing efforts,” Ms Battista said.
“It’s imperative that we don’t take domestic travellers for granted, they are our bread and butter and are often repeat visitors, so as an industry we need to ensure our offering remains relevant and enticing.
“Earlier this year, we went to market with a new $2.5 million tourism campaign in partnership with the Queensland State Government and our iconic theme parks, and I am thrilled to report it peaked the interest of families who are headed to the Gold Coast this Easter and beyond.”
The Gold Coast welcomed two consecutive quarters resulting in record domestic overnight expenditure and last month it was revealed international visitor spend hit an all-time high for the year ending December 2018.
Local MP Karen Andrews welcomed the latest survey results and said they showed the Gold Coast tourism industry continued to go from strength-to-strength.
“I’m pleased the Gold Coast continues to be a major tourist hotspot for domestic and international travellers,” Minister Andrews said.
“It’s positive news for the city’s tourism industry, which is the backbone of the local economy and a huge driver of employment.
“We know our world class beaches and scenic hiking spots, fine dining and attractions are one-of-kind and it’s great to see more Aussies choosing the Gold Coast when holidaying at home.”