International arrivals and departures hit records in 2005

If international airport lounges in New Zealand seemed more crowded last year, than previously, then a report released today confirms the steady growth in traveler numbers.

International arrivals and departures hit an all-time high of 8.69 million in 2005, Statistics New Zealand said today.

There were a record 4.34 million arrivals and a record 4.35 million departures in the year, up 4 and 5 per cent, respectively, compared with the December 2004 year.

Australia accounted for 37 per cent of all visitors, followed by the United Kingdom, the United States, Japan, Korea, China and Germany.

Overseas visitors intended spending an average of 20 days in New Zealand in both 2005 and 2004. On a monthly basis, the average length of stay in 2005 varied by seven days, with visitors arriving in January staying for the longest time (24 days), and those arriving in March, April, May and August staying the shortest time (17 days).

The top 10 main destinations accounted for 1.41 million, or three-quarters, of all New Zealand resident departures in 2005.

Australia remained the most popular main destination, accounting for half of all departures.

Fiji was next, followed by the United States and the United Kingdom.

On average, New Zealand residents leaving the country for a short trip in 2005 were away for 20 days, the same as in 2004.

- NZPA

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