POPULAR DESTINATION: Ranger Jess shows turtle hatchlings to Jessica Larkin (left), the 30,000th visitor to Mon Repos during the 2015 nesting season, and daughter Laurah.
POPULAR DESTINATION: Ranger Jess shows turtle hatchlings to Jessica Larkin (left), the 30,000th visitor to Mon Repos during the 2015 nesting season, and daughter Laurah. contributed

Aussies visiting Bundaberg more often, spending more cash

AUSTRALIANS are heading to Bundaberg in droves and spending more money and time here in new figures that show our tourism industry is thriving.

Among strong growth across the Australian tourism market, the numbers for Bundaberg were "positive all the way” according to Bundaberg North Burnett Tourism general manager Katherine Reid.

  • Domestic overnight visitor numbers: up 11% to 572,000 visitors in the year ending March 2017
  • 1,642,000 visitor nights YE March 2016 to 2,015,000 visitor nights in the year ending March 2017 - an increase of 22.77% 
  • Average overnight expenditure per visitor increased by 13.22% to $411/visitor
  • Total overnight visitor expenditure for YE March 17 of $235 million, a 25.72% increase
  • Day trip visitors also increased from 622,000 to 722,000 total domestic day trip visitors
  • 19.4% increase in average expenditure per day trip

"These strong numbers for the Bundaberg region are really encouraging and show a robust return on investment, as BNBT continues to enhance our destination marketing, visitor services and industry development,” Ms Reid said.

"A strong tourism economy drives community prosperity and the Bundaberg region is certainly making the most of its remarkable tourism assets by welcoming visitors with open arms to deliver extraordinary and memorable experiences across the region.”

Australians spent $61.7 billion on domestic overnight trips across the country, a 6.3% increase year on year, while Queensland on its own raked in $15.3 billion, a rise of 5.8% year on year.

"The staggering growth we are seeing reflects the increasing number of Australians who are choosing to pass on an overseas holiday in favour of experiencing the wonders of their own backyard,” Tourism and Transport Forum chief executive Margy Osmond said.

"The data also shows that there is a real shift towards people heading interstate for their holidays instead of simply just heading down the coast for a few days, for example.”

The Southern Great Barrier Reef's total domestic overnight visitor expenditure was $1.08 billion, up 11.9% year on year, and overnight visitors into the SGBR was 1.95 million, a slight drop of 1.6% year on year.

About 1.7 million visitors visited our end of the reef from other parts of Queensland, while 239,000 came from interstate.

Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt welcomed the news, saying the region continued to register strong growth.

"More Australians are visiting our wonderful region and spending more - which is boosting our local economy and creating even more jobs,” Mr Pitt said.

"Tourism remains a pillar of our economy and the Coalition Government will continue to invest in growing our vibrant tourism sector.”



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