News In Brief

Great to see Kiwis flock to local destinations but bring on the Aussies!

It has been a busy Queen's birthday weekend with New Zealanders making the most of the eased travel restrictions but the real lifeline for NZ tourism businesses will be a open trans-Tasman border and we can’t afford to delay attracting Aussies to our shores, tourism leaders agree.

The trans-Tasman border plan will be presented to New Zealand and Australian governments for consideration in early June, promises the Australia New Zealand Leadership Forum.

This is a progression welcomed by Tourism Industry Aotearoa who are keen to see New Zealand move quickly to gain Australian bookings.

TIA Chief Executive Chris Roberts said: “It’s great to see the progress being made to open the trans-Tasman travel bubble. TIA has had representation on one of the work streams leading this project, and a very robust proposal is being brought together.

“Officials and ministers will need to respond quickly, as every day matters for businesses who need access to customers, and for family and friends wanting to connect.”

According to Mr Roberts says there is no doubt Australians will visit when they are able to do so. With data indicting 13 percent of Australians are likely to visit New Zealand before the end of the year if travel restrictions are lifted. The new survey explores community sentiment for travel and leisure as COVID-19 restrictions ease and was carried out by Newgate Research for the Australia Tourism and Transport Forum. The results show how widely NZ is considered a safe holiday destination.

“New Zealand is a clear favourite, with a third of those wanting to travel overseas identifying New Zealand as their preferred destination,” says Mr Roberts. “New Zealand is seen as no riskier than travelling interstate within Australia, while there is a lot more apprehension about travelling to other destinations that have not been as successful in containing the virus.”

“Prior to the outbreak of COVID-19, New Zealand was a popular outbound travel destination for Australians with 1.5 million visiting in 2019, accounting for 40 percent of all international visitors to New Zealand.

“The sooner we can safely welcome our Australian visitors again, the more jobs and businesses we will save across New Zealand,” says Mr Roberts.

Image Credits: ©David Carillet – stock.adobe.com

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