International tourism gets a nice boost
THERE has been an increase in international tourists visiting Tropical North Queensland and the flow-on effects have been felt across the Douglas region.
Tourism Queensland has released its International Tourism Snapshot for the year ending December 2012 and although the UK market is down 3 per cent, all other markets which traditionally visit Douglas are up.
Tourism Port Douglas and Daintree executive officer Doug Ryan said the figures correlate with their predictions of a rebound in the market.
‘‘ The US market has rebounded, North America is up 12 per cent which is great considering we’re their favourite destination,’’ he said.
‘‘New Zealand is up 4 per cent, Europe is up 1 per cent and although UK is down the numbers are strong compared to other destinations - Gold Coast is down 15 per cent.
‘‘All of our strong markets, predominantly the western markets, are rebounding and showing an increased interest in our region.’’
Although the results are for all of Tropical North Queensland, Mr Ryan said there has been a flow-on effect within Douglas indicating there has been a rebound in visitation.
‘‘There’s signs of a great turnaround,’’ he said.
‘‘While the UK is running flat, speaking with wholesalers and the industry over there, interest really is mounting back up again.
‘‘After the success of the Best Job in the World campaign, Tourism Australia has started the ‘Best Jobs in the World’ in each state.
It’s driving the youth market with working visas, which of course is our workforce during peak season and extremely important to us.
‘‘In the first 24 hours it was launched in London they had 27,000 interests and that was just the UK, they are launching it in countries all over the world.’’
The Chinese market is also up 46 per cent as a direct result of direct flights and Mr Ryan said there has been a strong flow-on effect to the region.
‘‘Direct flights make a huge difference and reinforces how important flights and the airport are to our destination,’’ he said.
‘‘The future is looking really good, we predicted it last year, we saw the change and expect continued growth and investment in the region to be really strong in the next five years.’’