Monday, October 12, 2009

Asia Pacific tourism trending upwards

Figures released today by the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) show that the numbers of international visitors to the Asia Pacific region* fell by an estimated six percent in July 2009 compared to July 2008, an improvement over the months of May and June which recorded year-on-year reductions of 10 percent and eight percent respectively.

More importantly, international arrivals to South Asia showed a year-on-year increase of two percent in arrivals for July 2009, a result partly boosted by increased travel demand to Sri Lanka (+28 percent) and Nepal (air only, +10 percent). India, the dominant destination for foreign arrivals into South Asia, also reported its second straight month of improvement, albeit marginally. Similarly, arrivals to Southeast Asia appeared to also be on the mend as the year-on-year rate of decline slowed to less than minus three percent, due mainly to the much improved but still negative results from Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

International arrivals to Northeast Asia were down by about six percent in July, depressed by the double-digit declines for arrivals to Hong Kong SAR, Macau SAR and Japan. The overall rate of decline for Northeast Asia was mitigated by a smaller fall in travel demand for China (minus three percent) together with increased demand for Korea (ROK) and Chinese Taipei, where growth for the month was recorded at seven percent and 13 percent respectively.

The Pacific recorded an aggregate international visitor number drop of five percent in July, a result driven in part by a steep fall in arrivals to Australia (–12.8 percent).

According to John Koldowski, Director of PATA’s Strategic Intelligence Centre (SIC), “These latest results confirm that the prevailing depressed market conditions are still having an impact on international travel flows and, while the global economy appears to be showing signs of renewed activity in some areas, it is doing so at a sluggish pace. The reality is that there is no quick fix for the travel and tourism industry. We are still fighting to get back to ground zero.”

* 41 destinations as measured and reported in the PATA Annual Tourism Monitor
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Visit Ruapehu, the regional tourism organisation for the Ruapehu region is seeking participants for some focus group market research sessions.

The sessions will be held on Thursday 15th October in the central city of Auckland. There are three session times:

i) Noon – 1.15pm
ii) 5.30pm – 6.45pm
iii) 7.00-8.15pm

Light refreshments will be served and a retail voucher as a token of appreciation will be provided for participants.

The research will be conducted by Trish May from Visit Ruapehu and Mike Smith, Marketing Manager for Turoa and Whakapapa ski areas.

For further information please contact:

Primary Media Contact:
Name: Trish May :
Company: Visit Ruapehu

Phone: 06 385 86 87 :


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