Victoria is enjoying strong year-on-year growth in visitor numbers and spend from our state and national visitors, reaffirming Victoria as the choice destination of travel within Australia.
Visitors are flocking to see our world-class natural attractions in Melbourne and regional Victoria, as well as our year-round program of events spanning sport, culture, arts and theatre that is the envy of every other state.
The Victoria Tourism Industry Council (VTIC) today welcomed Tourism Research Australia’s figures on national visitation for the year ending December 2017, which highlights that Victoria continues to attract more visitors from Australia than ever before.
The results follow a remarkable weekend which saw almost one million people attended the 2018 Rolex Australian Grand Prix, the opening of the AFL season in Melbourne, the International Flower and Garden show, the International Food and Wine Festival and the Melbourne International Comedy Festival. Regional Victoria will too showcase its rich array of events with White Nights in Ballarat, Bendigo and Geelong to be held throughout 2018, as well as the Bright Autumn Festival in May which will showcase the natural beauty of Victoria’s High Country.
Victoria Tourism Industry Council Chief Executive Felicia Mariani said it was pleasing to see growth in Victoria, but regional Victoria in particular is enjoying a gold rush of tourism with a 14% year-on-year growth in national visitors and 15% in national visitor spend.
While the results overall indicate a rise in visitor numbers, expenditure and nights for Melbourne and regional Victoria, almost 70% of visitors to regional Victoria were Victorians with the remainder being from interstate.
Ms Mariani said despite the positive results, Victoria cannot afford to rest on its laurels, but rather build on this momentum by continuing to strongly advocate on behalf of industry to drive more demand into regional Victoria, particularly for interstate visitors.
“While VTIC is delighted with the figures there is still much work to be done to ensure that our interstate visitors see regional Victoria as a must-do and must-see component of their trip to Melbourne. We will continue to urge the State Government to allocate long-term funding to Victoria’s demand driving bodies for both tourism and events so that we are, and remain, the first-choice destination of travel in Australia for Australians.
“Tourism and a strong calendar of business and major events in Victoria is vital for the many thousands of businesses in regional Victoria and an important avenue for creating and sustaining employment in our regions,” she said.
“These latest figures again reinforce that the Visitor Economy is a key pillar of Victoria’s overall economy and the Victorian Government must strongly support and develop this flourishing industry.”