Ngā Manuhiri O Te Ao, O Aotearoa Anō Hoki — International and domestic visitors
To ensure the sustainability of the tourism sector, New Zealand-Aotearoa needs to develop and promote high-quality, authentic visitor experiences that draw on New Zealand-Aotearoa’s unique visitor proposition of our people and our place.
International visitors, domestic visitors and COVID-19
To ensure the sustainability of the tourism sector, New Zealand-Aotearoa needs to develop and promote high-quality, authentic visitor experiences that draw on New Zealand-Aotearoa’s unique visitor proposition of our people and our place. The Government’s tourism strategy highlighted the importance of both international and domestic visitors. Visitors, both Kiwis exploring their own backyard, as well as visitors from overseas, contribute significantly to our country.
International visitors bring money into the economy and showcase the New Zealand-Aotearoa brand to an international audience. However, COVID-19 encouraged a renewed focus on the domestic visitor market. Domestic tourism was able to keep many businesses alive during the closure of the international borders and reminded New Zealanders about the importance of tourism to the economy, encouraging kiwis to explore and try new experiences.
Tourism New Zealand Domestic Demand Review
Tourism New Zealand (TNZ) played an important role in domestic visitation during COVID-19, with the scope of their mandate being formally amended by Cabinet to allow for marketing to New Zealanders. TNZ created several high-performing campaigns, with the widely seen slogan 'Do Something New, New Zealand'.
Tourism New Zealand continued to keep the New Zealand brand alive in the hearts and minds of our international visitors and have resumed international marketing activity to encourage booking and travel to New Zealand. You can explore their work on their website.
As the international borders have now reopened, the Minister of Tourism has asked MBIE to lead a review of whether Tourism New Zealand should continue to market domestically in the medium-long term.
This review is not assessing the performance of Tourism New Zealand in marketing domestically whilst the international borders were closed, but rather determining the benefits and challenges of having a central body marketing tourism to New Zealanders.
Research Reports on Domestic Tourism
Prior to COVID-19, MBIE commissioned two research pieces on domestic tourism trends to inform future decision-making. These are available to be read below: