Tourism New Zealand predicts domestic visitor spending could increase by millions as it pitches for more Kiwis to travel in their own backyard.
Domestic visitors have always had a major role in the tourism sector, worth roughly $23 billion to the economy pre-Covid-19.
Last year, Tourism New Zealand shifted into domestic marketing after the borders were closed.
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Its chief executive René de Monchy said New Zealanders had travelled far and wide and across the seasons.
Domestic spend had grown by about 15 per cent in the last 12 months.
“Obviously we’ve had a captive audience but we want to continue to grow,” de Monchy said.
Tourism New Zealand planned to continue to encourage and foster more New Zealanders to explore their backyard, he said.
The rough target is to increase domestic spending by between 5 and 10 per cent over the coming year.
“Over the last year, that 15 per cent growth was $1.1 billion domestically so these are quite significant numbers when you look at how much we as New Zealanders spend in our own country, enjoying it as a visitor if you like and travelling around the country.
“So we think there’s hundreds of millions of dollars, I think, potential for growth going into the future.”