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Australian Tourism Export Council (ATEC) - logoAustralia’s export tourism sector is on a path of gradual yet promising recovery, as the number of international holidaymakers entering the country reaches 74% of pre-pandemic levels. The Australian Bureau of Statistics reports this steady resurgence, which marks a significant step towards revitalizing the industry that has been severely impacted by global travel restrictions.

Despite the encouraging trends in inbound tourism, Australians are embarking on overseas holidays at unprecedented rates, surpassing travel numbers recorded in April 2019. The contrast between outbound and inbound travel highlights the dynamic nature of Australia’s tourism landscape in the post-pandemic era.

“Australia’s export tourism industry is on a slow and steady recovery, and while the numbers are not rebounding to previous levels as quickly as we would like, we are witnessing monthly improvements,” stated Peter Shelley, Managing Director of the Australian Tourism Export Council (ATEC).

Shelley expressed optimism about the future, emphasizing that the current growth trajectory could see the industry return to 2019 levels by late this year or early 2025. He noted, “Despite a slow recovery, our industry remains positive and fully engaged in rebuilding our inbound markets.”

The latest statistics reveal significant shifts in the sources of inbound tourists. Countries such as India, Indonesia, and South Korea show substantial visitor numbers increase compared to 2019. Notably, the Chinese market, which contributed over $3.3 billion in tourism spending in 2019, is also beginning to recover, buoyed by the reinstated funding for the China Approved Destination Status (ADS) scheme.

“We are now seeing good growth in inbound visitation from markets including India, Indonesia, and South Korea compared to 2019. Encouragingly, the China market is also showing positive signs of recovery,” Shelley added.

The ADS scheme aims to enhance tourism offerings and attract more group tours from China, aligning with modern consumer preferences. As Australia’s tourism industry adapts to these changes, collaboration with the government and developing high-quality, consumer-driven tour packages are essential for sustaining growth.

In conclusion, while Australia’s export tourism industry is recovering slower than desired, the steady increase in international arrivals is a testament to the sector’s resilience. With targeted efforts and strategic partnerships, Australia is well-positioned to reclaim its status as a premier global travel destination.




Written by: Yves Thomas