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Victoria’s visitor economy has broken the record books again with international visitor expenditure reaching a new height of $8.5 billion, up 12.9 per cent year on year and well above the national average growth rate of eight per cent.

Today’s release of the International Visitor Survey for the year ending December 2018 showed that Victoria welcomed three million international visitors, up by 5.4 per cent and above the national average growth rate of 4.8 per cent and key competitors New South Wales (up 3.0 per cent) and Queensland (up 2.3 per cent).

Visitor nights in Victoria increased at a double-digit pace of 11.2 per cent to reach 72.9 million nights, almost triple the national average of 3.8 per cent and again ahead of Queensland (up 3.7 per cent) and New South Wales (up 2.4 per cent).

Victoria’s international expenditure was largely driven by Asian markets, with strong double-digit growth recorded from India, China, Indonesia and Taiwan.

Notably, visitor spending was up 44.3 per cent in the Indian market, to $543m and Chinese visitors spent an extra 23.9 per cent, taking Chinese expenditure to $3.3bn and driving overall expenditure growth.

International overnight expenditure in regional Victoria increased at a double-digit pace of 11.1 per cent year-on-year to reach $581 million. International visitors to regional Victoria increased by 6.1 per cent to 565,000, above the national regional average growth rate of 4.1 per cent. 

Seven of Victoria’s eleven tourism regions experienced year-on-year increases in international overnight visitation including Phillip Island (up 19.5 per cent), Victoria’s High Country (up 16.3 per cent), Gippsland (up 16.2 per cent), Murray (up 10.9 per cent) and Great Ocean Road (up 9.7 per cent).

Visit Victoria’s highly successful major events strategy coupled with a comprehensive international marketing strategy, has successfully grown Victoria’s global standing. 

As we continue to break records for numbers of international visitors, it is clear Victoria’s reputation as a premiere destination for events and new experiences is growing.
Peter Bingeman, CEO, Visit Victoria

Visit Victoria Chief Executive Officer Peter Bingeman said, “As we continue to break records for numbers of international visitors, it is clear Victoria’s reputation as a premiere destination for events and new experiences is growing.”

“Tourism in Victoria, both in Melbourne and across all regional sectors, is booming like never before.”

“It is clear we are well on-track to reach our goal of growing the state’s visitor economy to $36.5 billion by 2025.”

Victoria TotalVictoria Growth Rate (%)National Growth Rate (%)
Visitors ('000)3,0395.44.8
Nights
('000)
72,87211.23.8
Spend
($ m)

8,46712.98.0

Summary of International Performance (year ending Dec 2018)

  • International expenditure in Victoria continued to break records to reach $8.5 billion in the year ending December 2018, returning to double-digit growth of 12.9% and increasing market share of expenditure by 1.2 percentage points.
  • Victoria exceeded the national growth rate for spend (+8.0%) and key competitor New South Wales (+4.3%), although was marginally behind Queensland (+13.3%) which recorded very strong growth from China.
  • Victoria experienced year-on-year growth in international visitors to reach 3.0 million (+5.4%), above the national average growth rate (+4.8%) and key competitors New South Wales (+3.0%) and Queensland (+2.3%).
  • Spend growth for Victoria was largely driven by Asian markets, with strong double-digit growth recorded from India, China, Indonesia and Taiwan. Positively, the USA (+7.7%) and UK (+4.7%) returned to positive growth following recent declines.
  • Victoria experienced growth in spend for all key purpose of visit segments with double-digit growth recorded from the Education (+21.7%) and VFR (+11.6%) segments.
  • International expenditure, visitors and nights in Melbourne increased, ahead of the national cities average.
  • Regional Victoria recorded growth across all key measures. Visitors to regional Victoria from Western markets returned to growth after a period of decline (+7.3% or +23,400 visitors), driving the overall positive result for regional Victoria.