West is best: WA tops the country in national tourism growth
The data showed most international visitors came from the United Kingdom, China, Germany, Indonesia and Japan, with the Perth and the South West regions topping the list of most popular tourism destinations.
The data also showed visitors from other Australian states and territories grew by 17.8 per cent in 2018, the highest growth rate in Australia, and chose to spend more money and nights in the west.
Tourist attractions in WA also inspired West Australians to holiday at home, raising intrastate visitor rates to a four-year-high.
WA tourism minister Paul Papalia said the increase was the result of successful advertising initiatives by the government, including the 2018 AFL tourism, Hotel Perth and Road Trips marketing campaigns.
“These latest numbers should be celebrated,” he said.
“We worked closely with industry to develop and deliver our Two-Year Action Plan for tourism and it’s working.”
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Mr Papalia said the state had recently hosted some of the world’s most influential travel buyers for the Australian Tourism Exchange, and had several top-tier spots events coming up to attract potential travellers.
“Our AFL marketing is underway targeting east coast fans and our events calendar is stacked with top-tier sports clashes including the Manchester United versus Leeds United game, State of Origin and WA’s first-ever Bledisloe Cup match,” he said.
“Direct flights to Japan start in September and we’ve secured $12 million to go after a bigger share of our key international markets.”
He said the government was also in the process of developing WA’s tourism brand to place the state as a competitive tourism destination.
“We’ve now got the momentum and the blueprint to make 2019 another standout year,” he said.