Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Otago hardest hit by vanishing tourists

Otago Corrections Facility at Milburn

Otago's 'Milton Hilton' seems to be the most successful accommodation facility in the region.
Otago accommodation providers have recorded the biggest decline in occupancy rates in the country, with Queenstown the worst hit, industry authorities say.

Otago recorded double-digit drops in the last quarter of 2008 compared with the corresponding period in 2007, but almost all regions recorded a slight decline in hotel, motel, apartment, hosted accommodation and backpackers occupancy rates, according to an accommodation survey from Statistics New Zealand.

Occupancy-rate declines of 12.4% (September), 12% (October), 16.8% (November) and 10.9% (December), compared with the corresponding period the previous year, resulted in the region recording 112,000 fewer guest nights than in 2007.

"We are aware of the problems, particularly in Queenstown . . . we are noticing the traditional tourist areas are not getting traditional tourists," Motel Association of New Zealand chief executive Michael Baines, of Wellington, said.

Dunedin and other areas of Otago were performing well considering the difficult times, but Queenstown was suffering from a decline in international tourist numbers, he said.

Otago (57%), Southland (56%) and West Coast (61%) were the only regions to record a higher proportion of international guest nights than domestic guest nights in 2008.

Source: Click HERE

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