Visitor spend up 10 per cent

THE rising Australian dollar has halted international visitor numbers to the Gold Coast in recent months, but those that make it are spending more.

Tourism Research Australia figures show that international visitors to the Gold Coast spent more than $1.034 billion in the 12 months from July 2008 to June 2009 — $94 million more than in the previous 12 months.

The 10 per cent increase in visitor spend puts the Queensland tourism capital ahead of its competitors in Brisbane, Sydney, the Whitsundays and Tropical North Queensland.

Gold Coast Tourism CEO Martin Winter, says that while the Gold Coast experienced a decrease in traffic (-7.4 per cent), the increase in expenditure was testament to the strong value offered by the Gold Coast.

“It’s no secret that every tourism destination is doing it tough, but to post such an outstanding result for international visitor spend means the tourism cash registers on the Gold Coast are still ticking over strongly, I would say we have the most robust tourism industry in Australia,” he says.

“Our variety of experiences and attractions means those that come to the city don’t just stop and flop, they get out there and make the most of their time in Australia’s playground, that’s how people view the Gold Coast and that’s how Gold Coast Tourism has promoted the city in the knowledge that numbers will remain down until the global recession is over.”

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