International visitor arrivals to Australia reached 6.3 million in the full-year 2012-13 – up 4.9% compared to the previous 12-month period.
According to the latest data from Tourism Research Australia (TRA), this growth was outpaced by a 5.9% rise in tourism receipts, which hit AU$28.2 billion (US$27.0bn). And Australia appears to be benefiting from the rising spending power of Chinese tourists.
Receipts generated by Chinese visitors increased 20.0% to AU$4.5bn in 2012-13, compared to just 2.3% growth in receipts from Japanese tourists, to AU$1.5bn.
But Australia was also boosted by its traditional markets, including the UK (+7.3% to AU$3.0bn), US (+9.0% to AU$2.5bn) and New Zealand (+3.7% to AU$2.3bn).
“The report shows that in 2012-13, international visitor expenditure… was around three times the global average rate of growth of 1.8%,” said Dr Leo Jago, general manager of TRA, who added that the country was making “good progress” towards its targets for 2020.
The Australian domestic tourism market also performed well in 2012-13, with domestic visitor expenditure increasing 3.2% to AU$69.5bn, while domestic overnight spending rose 3.2% to AU$51.4bn.