As fears of coronavirus stymie international tourism, New Zealanders are being urged to take a ‘staycation’ to support our own tourism industry.
In any other non-pandemic year, visitor numbers from China would be peaking about now, usually making up about 12 per cent of total arrivals into New Zealand. Because of the coronavirus outbreak and subsequent travel bans from mainland China, that figure is now at zero.
Tourism Industry Aotearoa says visitor arrivals have also softened from South Korea, Japan and other parts of Asia. Fortunately, according to the TIA, visitor numbers from New Zealand’s other key markets, Australia and the US, are still holding up, however the industry is preparing for further knocks as the virus spreads.
TIA Chief executive Chris Roberts told Kerre McIvor on Newstalk ZB the outbreak is having a major impact on small businesses who service the Chinese visitor market, leaving them with no option but to shut up shop.
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