Tourism hit by dollar

Confirmation that the strong Australian dollar has been bad news for tourism operators came yesterday with official figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

International arrivals increased just 2%, below the Federal Government’s forecast of 3.7% according to the figures released yesterday.

But the happy news was the big increase in Chinese and Indian tourists. The number of Chinese visitors increased 15.9%, Indians were up 13.6% and the Irish up 12.2%.

British visitors fell 6.2%, Japanese visitors fell 12% and the Koreana were down by 3%.

The strong dollar presents local operators with a double whammy as Australians chose to travel overseas. The number of Australians travelling overseas surged 10.6% in 2007, following 4% and 8.9% growth in two preceding years.


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