International Growth continues for Southern Great Barrier Reef destination!

SGBR once again shows solid growth in the international visitor statistics.

The Southern Great Barrier Reef (SGBR) has yet again shown strong positive growth in the International Visitor Survey, released by Tourism Research Australia.

International Visitor numbers to the SGBR have grown by over 18% to 157,000, with 120,000 being those on holiday, an increase of over 16%.

With the survey showing statistics for the past 12 months until end of September 2017, the total nights stayed in SGBR was up by 22.7%, totalling 2.7 million night stays, with the holiday market contributing 1.1 million nights, up 2.8%. 

The SGBR partnership, consisting of Bundaberg and North Burnett Tourism, Gladstone Area Promotion and Development Ltd (GAPDL) and Capricorn Enterprise, has invested heavily in the international market particularly in the Northern European, UK, and American sectors, which have seen massive increases such as the UK up 26%, Germany up 36%, USA up 24%.

Capricorn Enterprise chief executive Mary Carroll praised the SGBR partnership stating “after years of collaborating and targeting our limited resources and funds to specific international western markets, the results speak for themselves.  Our recent investment in our first ever SGBR sales trip to Germany will build on this success.  We have seen particular growth in the UK, Germany and France markets to Great Keppel and Pumpkin Islands which have positively affected our mainland trade ready operators on the Capricorn Coast, Rockhampton region and Central Highlands.”

Darryl Branthwaite, CEO of GAPDL says “these results are a positive indication that the partnership we have with SGBR, pooling our resources, is resulting in this region developing a solid base with amazing experiences, such as Heron and Lady Musgrave Islands, which are world class, now competing on a world stage, driving our local economies, which employs approx. 9600 people across the region’s tourism industry. The future for these regions and the SGBR is incredibly bright.”

Bundaberg North Burnett Tourism General Manager, Katherine Reid, was pleased with the results saying “Tourism presents an extremely competitive marketplace, and to see this sort of consistent results for international visitation, and expenditure, is truly encouraging for our tourism industry and our collective efforts as the Southern Great Barrier Reef. 

“For a destination to effectively play in the international marketplace they need ‘trade ready’ accommodation, tour product and quality visitor experiences.  Businesses that are ready to package, contract with wholesalers and service different cultural needs.  The 3 SGBR regional tourism organisations have been supporting businesses to be trade ready for the last 5 years, with over 30 businesses across the SGBR having been through the mentoring programs.  With an average length of stay of 17.3 nights for international visitors in the Southern Great Barrier Reef region, tourism is a strong driver of economic prosperity in the regions” she said.

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