Record numbers cross the ditch to Brisbane

  • Written by Brisbane Marketing

The number of New Zealanders flying across the ditch to visit Brisbane has reached an all-time high as tourism records continue to tumble for the city. Tourism Research Australia’s International Visitor Survey found the number of visitors from New Zealand to Brisbane climbed 8.1 percent to an all-time high of 230,000 in the year to June 2019. Brisbane is fast becoming a top destination, especially through Queensland school holiday dates.

Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner said the spike coincided with the inaugural Magic Round and other major drawcard events including the Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art, Curiosity and the World Science Festival Brisbane.


“Brisbane just keeps getting better and is attracting more visitors than ever before through new hotels, precincts, and experiences alongside an ever-increasing calendar of major events,” Cr Schrinner said.

“International visitor numbers smashed the previous record, with visitor figures from New Zealand, India and Canadian all soaring.”

“The overall number of international visitors to Brisbane climbed 3.4 percent to a record high of 1.4 million.”

“Other markets which demonstrated a record uplift over the period were Canada with a significant rise of 34.5 percent to 41,000 and India with a 17.6 percent increase to 41,000.”

“Our international visitors spent up big in Brisbane, with a rise of 7.4 percent to $2.8 billion in international visitor expenditure injected into our economy.”

Cr Schrinner said the latest National Visitor Survey, also released today, revealed records all round as Australians came in droves to visit Brisbane.

“We’ve seen the total number of domestic visitors to Brisbane shoot up 8.2 percent to a record 7.7 million, boosted in part by a 5.3 percent increase in the number of holidaymakers – now at 2.2 million,” Cr Schrinner explained.

“Brisbane has always had a friendly rivalry with other eastern states and so we’re delighted to have welcomed record numbers of visitors from both Sydney (up 13.3 percent to 948,000) and Melbourne (up 8 percent to 584,000).”

“What’s more is that they’re spending more than ever while they’re here which equates to $4.9 billion for Brisbane – up 10.3 percent.”

“It’s a coup for the city that our domestic tourism market is performing so strongly as the rest of Australia catches on to everything Brisbane has to offer.”

Brisbane’s International Visitor Survey results – Year to 30 June 2019

All visitors – up 3.4% to 1.4 million – RECORD
Holiday visitors – up 1% to 735,000
Visiting Friends & Relatives (VFR) – up 9% to 449,000 – RECORD
Business visitors – up 3.5% 137,000
Expenditure – up 7.4% to $2.8 billion

Top international markets for Brisbane

China – all visitors down 0.6% (steady) to 258,000
New Zealand – all visitors up 8.1% to 230,000 - RECORD
UK – all visitors down 3.9% to 126,000
USA – all visitors up 3% to 103,000
Taiwan – All visitors – up 1% to 57,000

Brisbane’s National Visitor Survey results – Year to 30 June 2019

Total visitors – up 8.2% to 7.7 million - RECORD
Holiday visitors – up 5.3% to 2.2 million – RECORD
Visiting Friends & Relatives (VFR) – up 13.4% to 3.1 million – RECORD
Business visitors – up 6.7% to 1.9 million
Total expenditure - up 10.3% to $4.9 billion - RECORD

Brisbane national visitors

Sydney - all visitors up 13.3% to 948,000 - RECORD
Melbourne - all visitors up 8% to 584,000 - RECORD

New NVS methodology, 2019

Tourism Research Australia has transitioned NVS sampling to 100% mobile phone interviews (from 50% mobile phone/50% landline) to reflect current phone usage trends. The change in methodology has seen a break in series, so please use caution when comparing 2019 results with previous time periods.

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