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International visitor numbers rise slightly



After falling for eight months in a row, international guest nights in hotels, motels, backpackers, and holiday parks held steady in August, rising 0.5 percent compared with the same month a year ago, Stats NZ has announced.

But these numbers need to be met with some considerations, says chief executive for Tourism Industry Aotearoa Chris Roberts.

The Commercial Accommodation Monitor surveys are coming to an end, with September’s results being the last release of data, due out on November 14 this year.

“The August CAM numbers are encouraging, but do need to be treated with some caution,” he says.

“The survey is no longer being funded, with September being the final month. This means the quality of the data may not be great – as some accommodation providers may be taking less care with the information provided to StatsNZ, knowing that the survey is coming to an end.”

Overseas guests spent almost 960,000 nights in commercial accommodation in August 2019, up 5000 on August 2018.

"International guest nights picked up in August, after falling each month since the end of 2018. On the other hand, domestic guest nights have generally been rising for about 18 months," accommodation statistics manager Melissa McKenzie says.

"August is typically one of the lower months for overseas visitors, with international guest nights doubling in summer compared with the quieter winter season."

This is the second to last release of Accommodation survey data, with the final release on November 14, 2019, releasing data for the September 2019 month.

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