According to Tourism New Zealand, the industry is taking promising steps towards recovery, but after years of turmoil it will take years to recover.
Chief Executive Rene de Monchy said authorities tried to avoid forecasting for the summer because the market remained very volatile.
“But if you look at a 50-60% recovery, it probably looks like a reasonable number for what the summer will be like,” said de Monchy.
“Airline capacity will return to about 70% heading into the summer, so that’s a positive thing.”
October figures showed total visitor numbers at around 57% compared to the same period in 2019, he said.
Arrivals from Australia in September reached 82% compared to the same month in 2019, but spending returned to 100% of previous levels, de Monchy said.
“We’re actually seeing value go up before volume, but given some price points, it’s probably not all that surprising.”
He acknowledged that as companies scale back, they are facing particular challenges of labor shortages.
Currently, only 68% of seats are available on airlines to New Zealand.
Tourism New Zealand is actively working with airlines and airports to try to attract more airlines and routes, he said.
“American Airlines is back for seasonal service from Dallas Fort Worth to Oakland.
“Just a few weeks ago, Emirates resumed direct flights from Dubai to Auckland.”
New Zealand’s location meant flights were the biggest hurdle to getting tourists here, so those were important steps for connectivity, he said.
Tourism New Zealand’s first global campaign in two years, ‘If You Seek’, has already made waves overseas since its launch in August.
This campaign is meant to attract the attention of curious travelers.
Across the key markets of Australia, the US and China, 92% of those actively considering traveling to New Zealand have seen If You Seek.
“This makes them more likely to want to visit New Zealand, so we’re seeing very good results,” de Monchy said.
Over the past four months, the campaign has generated nearly 200,000 operator referrals.
He said the campaign would continue for the time being as it appealed to visitors who wanted New Zealand to attract and fit in with the 100% Pure New Zealand brand.
https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/national/481014/tourism-body-working-to-get-recovery-underway-in-volatile-market Tourism organizations working to recover from volatile markets