Media release

9 October 2019

A surge in visitor spending from the US has helped boost international tourist spending to a record $44.6 billion, according to the latest International Visitor Survey released today.

Federal Tourism Minister Simon Birmingham said the increase in visitor numbers and spending from the US comes off the back of Tourism Australia’s highly touted Dundee campaign.

“The US is critically important for Australia’s tourism industry, with US travellers splashing the cash when they come out here, spending on average $5000 per person per trip,” Minister Birmingham said.

“That’s why last year we launched one of our largest ever marketing campaigns to help stimulate this lucrative market and get more Americans down under.

“The Dundee campaign, which kicked off in February last year, sought to capitalise on the growing number of Americans travelling internationally by encouraging them to choose Australia as their next holiday destination.

“We know Americans want to visit Australia, but our biggest challenge has always been to convert this interest into action and actually getting them on a plane headed for Australia.

“It’s clear this is starting to become a reality with visitation from the US rising to a record 764,000, whilst spending hit a record $4 billion, up 9 per cent on the previous last year.

“Our Government continues to invest record amounts in Tourism Australia for creative and cutting-edge marketing campaigns like Dundee to get more tourists to Australia, spending their hard earned cash in our economy and creating more jobs.”

Australia welcomed 8.6 million international visitors in the year to June 2019, representing an increase of 3 per cent whilst visitors spent $44.6 billion in the period, up 5 per cent.

“Among our other tourism markets, Japan, India and Indonesia continue to record impressive levels of growth, highlighting the importance and potential of Asia as a region for our industry.

“Japan has long been one of our most important tourism markets and pleasingly we’ve seen it rebound in recent years, with the latest figures showing a jump in visitation and spend of 9 per cent and 16 per cent respectively.

“Several significant aviation developments in recent weeks, including the commencement of ANA’s direct Tokyo to Perth service last month, along with the allocation of two new slots to Australia out of Haneda airport, means we can expect to see this market continue on an upward trajectory.

“India has also continued to gain momentum, with visitor numbers climbing 12 per cent to more than 350,000 and spend increasing 17 per cent to $1.8 billion.

“These figures come off the back of consistently high growth from India over the last decade, where we’ve seen the market more than triple in size.”

Minister Birmingham said domestic tourism also continued to boom, with more and more Aussies choosing to holiday at home, according to the latest National Visitor Survey also released today.

“Australia is home to an abundance of incredible and breathtaking tourism offerings which tourists travel from around the world to experience, so it’s great to see so many Aussies choosing to get out and explore these for themselves as well,” Minister Birmingham said.

“Aussies took 113 million domestic overnight trips during the year ending June, injecting a record $77.5 billion into the economy with each traveller spending on average $684 per person per trip.

“This means more people getting out into our regions, stimulating local economies and helping to support the 646,000 Australians employed in our tourism sector.”

The latest International Visitor Survey results and National Visitor Survey results are available on the Tourism Research Australia website at: