Recently released figures from Tourism Australia (TA) confirm that Australia received a record 5.4 million overseas tourists during their fiscal year which ended on June 30, 2005, delivering the best ever financial year results for Australian tourism.
Figures are up by six per cent on the previous year and were up eight per cent during the seven months to July 2005.
Statistically, figures from the Gulf were even more impressive. “Over the past 12 months ending June 30, 2005, Australia has received 35,820 visitors from the GCC countries, a whopping increase of 20 per cent over the same months in 2004, confirming the growing interest in Australia as one of the hottest destinations for visitors from the region,” said Andrew Oldfield, Tourism Australia’s recently-appointed industry development manager in the GCC region, based in Dubai.
“We consider such growth to be a sure sign that our marketing efforts, combined with the unquestionable appeal of Australia as a repeat tourist destination from the Gulf, have been effective,” he said, adding that efforts this past year to make visa issuance smoother and more simple for the GCC visitor have also contributed to the overall success of the campaigns.
Oldfield credits the diversity of Australia and the ease of vacationing there as one of the biggest factors in the steady increase in tourism from the region every year. “A family may choose to get to know the exciting cities of Sydney and Melbourne one year, spend a relaxing time on the Gold Coast in Queensland the next and then come back to explore Perth or the Great Barrier reef and the rainforests in Northern Queensland some other time,” he added.