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March 14, 2022

Central Otago tops visitor spend growth

Central Otago has come out on top of the list of 31 regions recording growth in total visitor spend for 2021. The region recorded a 19.3% growth in spend compared to 2020 – with the next closest region being Clutha at 19.1% and is well ahead of the national average of 4%. Spend on retail was the most significant proportion of visitor spend in the region at 65%.

Although 2021 continually provided new challenges caused by the COVID pandemic to every corner of New Zealand, particularly with the ongoing limitations for travel and business, we should celebrate these results and be thankful that our community has benefitted from the commitment of New Zealanders to explore their own country says Dylan Rushbrook, General Manager Tourism Central Otago.

Visitors have always been important to Central Otago’s economy, as in our small communities those employed in tourism are the same people who are volunteer fire fighters, school bus drivers, club volunteers, and so on, the roles that are the very fabric of our communities.

Independent Visitor Insight Research undertaken in the latter half of 2021, reaffirmed that visitors’ expectations are exceeded when they visit Central Otago and that it has strong appeal for short breaks and holidays. The research highlights that the success of the region is in its authentic experiences, people and environment.

Despite the positive results, there is obvious concern around the immediate impacts of the Omicron outbreak on our local operators, and the wider region. The ongoing difficulties being faced by Central Otago’s primary gateways – Queenstown in particular, will create flow on effects that could stretch well into the future.

Category: Holiday Ideas

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