A series of party holiday experiences in the Pacific is proving a popular option for young Kiwis looking to experience their first international trip travelling alone.
Tourism HQ launched its first holiday experience, Blue Sky, five years ago in Fiji and has since expanded to running a second series, Spring Break, targeted at 18 to 25 year-olds.
For each event, the company booked out a resort exclusively for guests and organised activities including hosting boat parties and events in the evenings featuring New Zealand musicians and DJs.
Director of event experience at the company Olivia Rogers said the all-in-one package was attractive to a younger audience, who were asked to make a deposit and then pay in instalments so the cost of the trip (starting at $1499 including flights) was manageable.
"Everything is organised from their flights to parties to accommodation, guests just need to turn up to the airport," Rogers said.
The company had focused heavily on security and safety, hiring local security guards and being on the ground to monitor the events Rogers said, adding that this had been a major draw-card for the company.
"The experience of having your child travel overseas for the first time alone can be a nerve wracking one for parents but, Spring Break events are a well-organized, safe and fun way for over-18s to get a taste of international travel and pose a much less risky alternative to travelling to destinations like Bali and Thailand," she said.
According to Rogers, Tourism HQ was the only New Zealand company operating this type of tourism, and since launching five years ago, the company had doubled the number of guests each year. Last year's events saw the company host 1500 people across Blue Sky and Spring Break, as well as expanding to operate events in Rarotonga. Rogers said the aim was to double this in 2017.
"The goal for this year is to do 3,000 people, so it might look something like 6 to 8 events in Fiji and maybe 4 to 6 in Rarotonga," Rogers said.
"We have really good relationships with the locals and they're very supportive. We support the shoulder season up there so we're pumping tourism into the economy in Fiji and Rarotonga when they're in their quieter months."