The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment has estimated tourism spending in Hawke’s Bay will be $614 million for the year to September 2017, up 8 per cent compared with last year according to their Monthly Regional Tourism Estimates.
MBIE manager of sector trends Mark Gordon said that of this year’s tourism spending in the year to September 2017, international visitors spent $173 million, 14 per cent more than last year, and domestic tourists spent $442 million, 5 per cent more in that period.
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“When it comes to the monthly expenditure, tourism spend in Hawke’s Bay for the month of September 2017 is up 4 per cent compared with the month of September 2016.”
Hawke’s Bay Tourism general manager Annie Dundas said the figures were a good indication of what was in store for the region this summer.
“We’ve been on a wonderful growth path for a long time and another month of consistent growth is really good, particularly over a traditionally quieter month which is through winter and into early spring.”
September was a great month for the region that saw plenty of events, including the launch of the Spring Fling in Central Hawke’s Bay, she said.
“We’re consistently marketing Hawke’s Bay across New Zealand … So we’re just creating opportunities for things to happen and giving reasons for people to come to Hawke’s Bay.”
Napier mayor Bill Dalton said the estimates reflected the rising numbers seen on the ground and commended Hawke’s Bay Tourism for its work in promoting the region.
“I think it’s absolutely fantastic news. It’s the sort of numbers we expected because we’ve seen an increase in numbers coming through Hawke’s Bay.
“I think it very much reflects on the wonderful work that Annie Dundas and Hawke’s Bay Tourism are doing. It just shows what happens when you’ve got a co-ordinated tourism body that represents the whole region.”
He said business and family tourism were seeing more people in the region thanks to the development of the Napier Conference Centre and family-friendly spaces along Marine Parade.
Hastings acting mayor Sandra Hazelhurst said the region offered many unique natural features such as Cape Kidnappers, Te Mata Peak and the Hawke’s Bay Cycle Trails.
“It is fantastic to see the continued growth in tourism spend across Hawke’s Bay. The more tourists who visit our region, the more our businesses thrive and the more jobs are created across retail, accommodation, tourism activities and hospitality sectors.
MBIE developed the Monthly Regional Tourism Estimates, which are based on card transaction data, in consultation with tourism industry representatives to create a better measurement of the value of tourism by region.
“Visitor spending information for the regions helps inform investment and planning in the tourism industry by providing insight into where both domestic and international tourists are spending their money.
“Users can filter the data to get the information they need, including breaking it down by year, key areas within regions, country of origin, and tourism product groupings such as accommodation, transport and retail sales.”
Mr Dalton said the secret to continued success in Hawke’s Bay Tourism was keeping standards high.
“If we keep our standards up and keep on promoting the region it’s only going to go from strength to strength.”